Down the Block
A Helping Hand in the Neighborhood
Supporting our community of Millburn and Short Hills
Down the Block is a non-profit corporation created and run by a group of Millburn / Short Hills residents who were concerned that people right here in our town are struggling financially.
Our mission is to provide short-term assistance to those of our Township neighbors facing unexpected financial setbacks.
"Down the Block embodies a wonderful example of how a community works to give a helping hand and a level of support to its members in their time of need. As we work to build a community that lives, learns, and works together, Down the Block is an organization that we hold up to our students as a model of character, care and kindness that we strive to achieve in the school district and the Millburn community."
Dr. Christine Burton, Superintendent, Millburn Township Public Schools
How we can help
Perhaps you were laid off and your savings are nearly exhausted. Down the Block can help. Maybe your house was damaged and winter is around the corner. Down the Block can help. Or possibly your spouse can no longer work and your basic living expenses have stretched your one income. Down the Block can help.
Since our inception in 2009, Down the Block has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to cover expenses for hundreds of neighbors in need.
In 2008, as the housing and financial crisis descended, we saw that some of our neighbors were in need. We saw no other organization providing this type of assistance and serving our community.
We started Down the Block after hearing stories that deeply concerned us - stories of families right here in Millburn Township who were struggling financially to such an extent that their most basic needs - food, shelter, medical care, electricity, heat, etc. - could not be met.
How we started
Down the Block is the only organization that can step in to pay a bill for a Millburn Township resident experiencing temporary, unforeseen financial need.
Our board is comprised of local volunteers, so we have virtually no overhead - a bank account, a website, and the occasional postage for a mailing. Nearly 100% of donations go directly to approved applicants.
To ensure that your donation goes to those Township residents in need, we give each application careful, strictly confidential review. Once an applicant's claim is verified and deemed eligible, we provide payment directly to the provider of the goods or services needed (e.g., bank, landlord, utility, etc). In that way, you can be assured that your donation is used to help your neighbors meet their most pressing needs.
And applicants can be assured that we provide the help they need while respecting their privacy.
Down the Block's board members are all volunteers and do not get compensated. This helps ensure almost 100% of donations go towards the mission.
Linda Berkowitz - President
I was born and raised in Brooklyn until my family moved to New Jersey and I have lived in Short Hills since 1991. I have been working in residential real estate since 2009 and put my heart and soul into what I do.
I have been on various boards including my alma mater, Syracuse University., my synagogue, TBJ.
Presently I live in town with my husband, Ira of 38 yrs, and our 3 yr old rescue boxer/lab, Cassidy. My daughter, Allie, is living in San Diego working in the TV/Film business. My son, Zach, married to Rebecca lives in Brooklyn and is a music agent with their little boy, Sonny,
These experiences have given me the skill set to succeed in every way possible.