Detroit — Hundreds of volunteers will serve as “special Santas” when they deliver holiday food packages to approximately 1,200 low-income senior citizens across metropolitan Detroit as part of Focus: HOPE’s annual “Share with a Senior” event on Saturday, December 14.
The seniors, who are among the 38,000 participants in Focus: HOPE’s food outreach program, will receive fresh food and ingredients for a holiday meal, along with other items to supplement their monthly food box. The special holiday food includes turkeys or Cornish hens, potatoes, onions, vegetables and other items.
More than 300 volunteers — including individuals, couples and families — are expected to assist in this all-day effort. Volunteers will pick up the food boxes between 8 and 10 a.m.. at the Focus: HOPE Food Warehouse, located at 1200-B Oakman Boulevard in Detroit. A brief program will take place at 8:30 a.m. The warehouse will be decorated for the holidays with holiday music and refreshments available for volunteers.
“This special delivery effort is a great way for families to get involved and give back to our venerable senior citizens. The volunteers that make the deliveries are truly humbled by the appreciation and gratitude from the seniors,” said William F. Jones, Jr., CEO of Focus: HOPE. “The generous donations we have received from schools, businesses and individuals allow us to give back to seniors who truly need our help.”
Among the donors to the 2013 holiday program are Ford Motor Company, Mercy High School and Christ Church Cranbrook. Those who would like to donate toward this special delivery or other deliveries to senior citizens should contact the food program at 313.494.4600. Monetary donations can be made online at www.focushope.edu.
The volunteers not only deliver the food boxes, but spend a little time interacting with the seniors. Many of the seniors live alone and don’t have regular visitors, said Frank Kubik, director of Focus: HOPE’s Commodity Supplemental Food Program.
“This is an activity that truly warms our volunteers’ hearts,” said Kubik. “We assist these seniors throughout the year, but the holidays can be especially difficult and lonely for them. It’s wonderful to see how a holiday meal and a little companionship brighten their day.”
Focus: HOPE relies largely on the generosity of the community and organizations through donations and food drives to support the Share with a Senior event.
Anyone interested in making holiday deliveries this year can contact Focus: HOPE’s Volunteer and Community Outreach Department at 313.494.4401.