DETROIT — Boy Scouts of America, Michigan Crossroads Council and Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan (GSSEM) joined forces to collect 194,304 pounds of food for the Gleaners Community Food Bank of Southeastern Michigan.
This was the second consecutive year that the two organizations partnered on Scouting for Food, a region wide service project Boy Scouts of America have spearheaded locally since 1988. Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts collected the food donations during the week of November 5-12.
“Scouting for Food has been a tradition of Boy Scouts of America nationally for over 30 years,” said Vic Pooler, CEO of Great Lakes Field Service Council, Boy Scouts of America. “This long standing commitment to community service is what Scouting is all about, and partnering with Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan is a wonderful way for more Scouts to canvass areas in our region to provide more food for the less fortunate before the holidays arrive and the need is so much greater.”
Last year, Gleaners distributed more than 34 million pounds of food to soup kitchens, shelters and pantries in southeast Michigan. The Scouting for Food collections will help support Gleaners’ food supply this winter, allowing a larger distribution to people in need through the holiday season and beyond.
“Scouting for Food helps Gleaners stock pantry shelves in time for the holidays, which can be a difficult time for struggling families,” said Gerry Brisson, Gleaners’ president. “With the two scouting organizations combining forces, we’ll be able to provide even more meals to children, adults and seniors who need help. I’m very excited for this new partnership.”
Scouts distributed bags on November 5 in neighborhoods throughout their service areas, which include communities stretching from Wayne to Oakland and Macomb Counties, and Sanilac and Monroe Counties. Individuals who received Scouting for Food bags donated non-perishable canned or boxed foods in the bags and placed them on their porches for Scouts to pick-up by November 12.
More than 800 Boy Scout units and Girl Scout troops participated.
“Our girls and volunteers responded overwhelmingly to our first-time participation last year, and this year the response is even better,” said Denise Dalrymple, CEO of Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan. “To date, we have 439 troops signed up to participate. That’s more than double this the same time last year. I am so pleased that our Girl Scouts are excited to be a part of this important effort to collect food that will feed thousands of people in need.”
Last year, the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts collected over 220,000 pounds of food for Gleaners, and since the inception of its partnership with Gleaners in 2009, the Boy Scouts have collected more than 2,000,000 pounds of food donations for the organization.