NEWARK, N.J., Nov. 29, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Launching on November 29 or otherwise known as #GivingTuesday, the Greater Newark Holiday Fund is raising funds to buy thermal socks for 2,000 children and adults living without housing options in the State of New Jersey. To help these individuals, the Greater Newark Holiday Fund is hosting a #GivingTuesday Online Sock Drive. Everyone is invited to participate at http://2016.holidayfund.org/givingtuesday " Essex County has the largest number of homeless individuals in New Jersey," says John Nietzel, President of the Greater Newark Holiday Fund (GNHF), a 501c3 nonprofit charity. "At the end of last year, there were almost 1,800 homeless individuals just in Essex county alone. And socks are the #1 requested item of clothing by the homeless." SOCKS ARE #1 REQUESTED ITEM BY HOMELESS 19.9 percent of the entire homeless population for the state of New Jersey are located in Essex County. A recent report indicated that New Jersey's unsheltered and homeless population had risen this year by 48 percent. GOAL TO HELP 2,000 CHILDREN AND ADULTS On Tuesday, GNHF will join the global giving effort of #GivingTuesday held on the first Tuesday after #BlackFriday and #CyberMonday. According to Nietzel, GNHF hopes New Jersey residents will donate enough funds to supply 2,000 homeless children and adults a new pair of socks for the winter. Thick socks are necessary to keep individuals protected from frostbite and hypothermia as well as help prevent a variety of foot-related diseases commonly encountered by homeless individuals. Used socks cannot be donated and so new socks are a high-demand item.