Albion-Homer United Way Helps Feed the Community

It may have been cold outside, but there was a warm spirit inside the Albion Food Hub last week for the first Fresh Food Distribution funded by the Albion-Homer United Way.

The fresh food distribution was part of a grant to the Albion Food Hub to provide access to food for families in the area. Partnering with the Food Bank of South Central Michigan, the food distribution helped those needing assistance with food access. According the grant submitted to the Albion-Homer United Way board, about a third of Albion families live below the poverty level and need better access to fresh food and pantry items. Every dollar from the AHUW grant made it possible for the Albion Food Hub to purchase five to six pounds of food from the Food Bank. This “hand up not hand out” project helps those needing food access to lower the out-of-pocket grocery costs, according to Laura Overholt, Albion Food Hub Manager.

Members of the AHUW board and volunteers from VISTA and the Youth Advisory Board of the Albion Community Foundation were part of the food distribution. Volunteers helped fill boxes with fresh food and baked goods. In addition, they helped carry food to participants’ vehicles. The next distribution is set for February 14 at the Albion Food Hub, 112 E. Erie St.

The Albion-Homer United Way uses donations to fund grants that accomplish its mission to “inspire hope and create opportunities for a better tomorrow” for the communities it serves.

It is not too late to donate to the United Way campaign that has as its core goal “to create long-lasting changes that prevent problems from happening in the first place,” according to Marcia Starkey, AHUW Executive Director. All the money raised through individual donations, business and industry donations and payroll deductions stays in Albion and Homer to benefit people in these two towns.

“By contributing to the Albion-Homer United Way, we can change our story in these two communities, “Starkey said, “Living United is the way we help all of us to better our lives.”

Albion-Homer United Way Board Members and Laura Overholt, Food Hub Manager, assist with the fresh food distribution at the Albion Food Hub. L to R: Marcia Starkey, Laura Overholt, Mike Culliver, Gary Tompkins, Carolyn Amos.

Tim Krause