United Way of Bay County, United Way of Midland County, and United Way of Saginaw are participating alongside 23 United Ways across Michigan in the first-ever statewide Summer Stock Up food drive event June 1 – 28.
“Access to healthy food is a challenge for many, especially low-income and ALICE (Asset Limited Income Constrained Employed) families. The recent ALICE report showed that 38 percent of our neighbors are struggling with food insecurity across the state,” shared Holly Miller, president & CEO of United Way of Midland County. “That number is only growing and statewide data shows an increased demand for food resources well into 2022 and summer is historically a time when kids are out of school and demand increases.”
The month-long community initiative will help to stock the shelves of local pantries during a season of great need. Regional United Ways are partnering with Hidden Harvest. Through their food rescue and distribution program, Hidden Harvest serves 170 pantries and agencies throughout Midland, Bay, and Saginaw Counties.
“This year, the need for food is greater than ever with the cancelation of annual food collections and the increased demand due to Covid-19. Great Lakes Bay Region alone is facing a deficit of 260,000+ pounds of food. The United Way Summer Stock Up event will help us fill that need and continue to get healthy food into the hands of our neighbors,” said Samantha McKenzie, Executive Director of Hidden Harvest.
In addition to the statewide sponsor Kellogg’s, local sponsors for this event include: Dow, Corteva Agriscience, DuPont, Garber Automotive Group, Trinseo, SC Johnson, Covenant Healthcare and HAP. Event support is also being provided by: Great Lakes Loons, 1st State Bank, Bay City Towne Center and Two Men and a Truck.
The community is invited to donate online at www.stockupGLBR.com or drop off non-perishable food items to any of the following regional drop-off locations.
“Each and every one of us can play a role in helping our neighbors,” shared Holly. “We are so grateful to our amazing corporate and community partners for helping keep local pantry shelves full over the busy summer months.”
For more information on additional drop off locations and local ALICE reports, visit: unitedwaymidland.org, unitedwaysaginaw.org or unitedwaybaycounty.org.