Local Union Carpenter Rep Climbs More Than 10,000-Feet to Fight Hunger

Northeast Regional Carpenters Union Representative Jason Friedman scaled Cathedral Peak, California, a 10,916-foot high mountain in Yosemite National Park.

While the ascent is a personal achievement, he dedicated this effort to his ongoing Hike for Hunger.   For many, the thrill of ascending Cathedral Peak would be enough for most climbing enthusiasts, but Friedman’s altruistic character has urged him to do more. In this instance, “more” is raising money for the cherished charity, Hands of Hope. In keeping with the spirit of the event, Friedman promises that 100 percent of the donations will go toward aiding the hungry of the greater Edison Area, according to Friedman.

“No one should ever go hungry in the United States,” says Friedman, who considers it a fundamental human right. “I hope that my climb inspires all New Jersians of goodwill to donate.”

Hands of Hope is a nonprofit community-based organization, committed to providing an efficient and effective system for distributing food to alleviate hunger within a community. In 2015, they were able to serve over 10,000 disadvantaged people. This number was surpassed the following year as they managed to help over 13,000 people, about one-third of which were children.

“His generous spirit only surpasses Jason Friedman’s accomplishments as a mountaineer,” says Kevin McCabe, president, Carpenter Contractor Trust. “He exemplifies the finest spirit of union carpenters who are constantly at work helping those in the communities where they live and work.”

This is Friedman’s third Hike for Hunger. Last year his effort resulted in raising donations of more than $7,500 for the Edison area, after his attempt to scale Washington’s Mount Rainier.

To prepare for this effort, he has spent about 180 hours of training with 125 that including weights, jogging, indoor and outdoor rock climbing, cardio and ab workouts.

One year later, Friedman is attempting to duplicate his past success in part because, according to him, “My passion for mountaineering has not been diminished, and neither has the needs of our neighbors.”

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