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County Wide Food Drive provides snapshot of hunger in our community

This dispatch was added by one of our Nonprofit Neighbors. It does not represent the editorial voice of The Rapidian or Community Media Center.

Hunger is all around us--even in our own community. But we have hope. There are ways to get involved in the fight against hunger and poverty. Join Access of West Michigan by participating in the County Wide Food Drive!
A family is visiting a food pantry in the Access Pantry Network.

A family is visiting a food pantry in the Access Pantry Network.

Underwriting support from:

Suggested Items for Donation

  • Cereal
  • Soup
  • Rice
  • Canned fruits and vegetables
  • Canned meats (tuna, chicken, stew, etc.)
  • Pasta and pasta sauce
  • Peanut butter
  • Soap: dish, laundry, bar
  • Toilet paper
  • Diapers
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Toothbrushes and toothpaste


Drop Off Locations:

  • Family Fare Grocery Stores
  • D&W Grocery Stores
  • Duthler Family Foods
  • Fulton Heights Foods
  • Forest Hills Foods
  • Aldi
  • Walgreens
  • Mercantile Bank branches
  • Fifth Third Bank branches
Access SNAP Outreach staff visits local food pantries to help folks sign up for benefits.

Access SNAP Outreach staff visits local food pantries to help folks sign up for benefits.

The County Wide Food Drive is in full swing this week! Our goal is to collect 100 tons of food to stock the shelves of local food pantries. Why? Because hunger hasn't gone away.

Take a look at some of the statistics and facts about hunger in Kent County and the state of Michigan:

  • In 2011 there were over 47,000 individuals who visited a pantry within the Access Pantry Network one or more times. This is about 8% of the population, or one in every 12 Kent County residents. 
  • The Access Pantry Network distributed nearly 90,000 food services to children in 2011.
  • One in every six people in Kent County struggles with hunger.    
  • Through the 2011 Holiday Giving Network, over 7,000 families signed up to receive a Thanksgiving or Christmas holiday meal through the Access Pantry Network. That’s over 20,000 individuals in need of a meal.    
  • I.8 million Michigan residents utilize the Food Assistance Program (food stamps).*
  • In the past three years, Access has helped families struggling with food insecurity in Kent County apply for a potential $1.6 million worth of SNAP (food stamp) benefits. When someone is approved for food stamps they are able to receive the same amount every month for a year. $1.6 million represents the combined amount of all the cases Access has worked with in the past three years.

*The United States Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Report: Household Food Security in the United States.


The County Wide Food Drive goes until Saturday, October 13.  Please make a monetary donation or a donation of food & personal care items to benefit 50 local food pantries!

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