Meet our Volunteers
Check here periodically as we highlight the many generous people who are so giving of their time to our cause
Joe & Rose
Rose and Joe Phalon are the founders of Quilting for a Cause. Married for more than 25 years, they have both been involved in homeless outreach in one form or another for decades.
Rose has been sewing since her mom Nan taught when she was about 6 years old. Rose started by making pin cushions with scraps of fabric. By the 1980s, she started making quilts.
When Joe’s mom Marsha died in 2011, she left her fabric stash to Rose. She started making quilts for Joe to drop distribute to the homeless in New York City, much as he had with hats that Rose’s mother made. In 2017 Rose invited some friends and family to her home on the Martin Luther King Jr. weekend of service to make quilts for the homeless. And it grew from there.
“All we did was ask,” Rose says. “And it keeps on coming.”
A graduate of Pequannock Township High and Montclair State University, Rose was a school food service director until she began raising her family full time.
Joe is proof that one does not need to know how to sew to play a role in Quilting for a Cause. From the beginning, he has distributed the group’s quilts directly to the homeless in New York City, where he has worked for more than 30 years. Having been involved homeless volunteer projects over the years, Joe has gotten to know the nooks and crannies of the streets and subways of New York. Joe is a graduate of Ramapo College and PTHS. He is an award-winning investigative journalist who now devotes most of his time to Quilting for a Cause and his painting.
Lauren Pilaar is a Biology/Pre-Med & Health student at Kutztown University. Lauren has this to say about her volunteer work with Quilting For a Cause NJ:
"I feel like a lot of what makes me the person I am has to do with the volunteer work I do. Back at home I volunteer with my Grandma and her friends making quilts for homeless people. What I stand for is helping people and not focusing necessarily on myself all the time."