Effort underway to feed over 400 families during winter break.

December 8, 2016

food_groupshotEffort underway to feed over 400 families during winter break. 

#MasonCountyCares.

LUDINGTON — The Lakeshore Resource Network has teamed up with United Way of Mason County, Mason County Family Link, and a group of community volunteers to help feed over 400 local families with students who are home over holiday break. The effort comes with support from Orchard Market, Wal-Mart, and the Lakeshore Resource Network’s Michigan Health Endowment Funding.

“According to datacenter.kidscount.org, 53% or 2,171 students are eligible for free or reduced lunch in Mason County,” said Shelby Soberalski of Lakeshore Resource Network. “During the summer, numerous programs help serve these students lunches. The Lakeshore Resource Network wanted to provide assistance for the Holiday Break as well. Area schools are on holiday break for a total of 12 days, from December 22 to January 3.”

Mason County Family Link is working with school counselors in each public school in Mason County to identify 35 families in need of assistance. A group of community volunteers, including, Tara Autrey, Carrie Brandt, and Sara Ewing, worked with the Lakeshore Resource Network to design a menu, order food, and collect donations from local vendors, Soberalski said.

“The food boxes will focus on providing breakfast, lunch and snacks. These boxes will include apples, clementines, oatmeal, cereal, canned vegetables, peanut butter, raisins, soup, and kid-friendly easy to prepare meals. Along with food items, there will also be visual menus suggesting different ways for the food to be prepared and a calendar highlighting events that students can attend over the break.

“The Lakeshore Resource Network is committed to facilitating a network of resources to strengthen individuals and families in our community by helping to meet immediate needs and accessing opportunities for lasting solutions.”

Western Land Services GIS Department employees are volunteering to assist with assembly of boxes and organizing items. Boxes will be put together on December 16 by community volunteers and delivered to each school. Schools will be adding some additional non-food items before sending the boxes home with students on December 21.

Other sponsors include Lake Michigan Carferry, Habitat for Humanity of Mason County, and HELP Ministry, which are donating use of their vehicles. Also, Ludington Truck Tops is donating the use of its forklift.

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