Who We Are
The Project was originally intended to use donations from Aunt Chubby’s Luncheonette to give back to the community. Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Luncheonette distributed gift cards via the Hopewell Council of Churches, so those in need would be able to come in for a hot meal or some company. When the shutdown happened in 2020 and restaurant profits were non-existent, there was a need to pivot and The Chubby’s Project Lunch Program was born. The Chubby’s Project, a NJ Nonprofit Corporation, and Chubby’s of Hopewell, LLC (the restaurant) are two different entities working together. The restaurant provides meals, buys food and packaging at cost, infrastructure and labor, and the Project pays for the restaurant’s contribution using funds from grants and private donations.
John Haney, Executive Director - John is a resident of Hopewell, frequent patron of the Luncheonette, and educator. Prior to retirement, John served with distinction as Principal of several elementary schools across central New Jersey, including Elizabeth Avenue School in Franklin Township (2010-2022), Cranbury School (2007-2010) and Clinton Public School (1999-2007). His work included technology integration, extensive work with ESL and special education, student performance data analysis, staff retention and recruitment, and oversight of a number of capital renovations and improvement projects. He was recognized with the Blue Ribbon School Recognition in 2009. He has served as President of the Board of Directors of the ARC Mercer and, currently, as Grand Knight (Knights of Columbus) Hopewell Council 7103. John’s primary responsibilities will include securing funding resources and strengthening systems to ensure the work of the Chubby’s Project continues for many years to come.
Meet more of the Team
We have a group of dedicated volunteers who donate many hours each week to oversee each part of this many faceted program. Lead program volunteers coordinate the Lunch Program, Food Pantry Donations/Education, and our Tuesday Soup delivery. One part-time employee handles administrative duties and fundraising. The Chubby’s Project currently collaborates with the Hopewell Council of Churches, the Hopewell Elementary School PTO, the Hopewell Valley Municipal Alliance, and the D&R Greenway Land Trust.