Church to host drive-up food drive to restock Swartz Creek pantry

SWARTZ CREEK — The United Methodist Church of Swartz Creek will host a “drive in, drop off” food drive to help restock the Swartz Creek Community Food Basket.

The collection will take place from 1-2 p.m. Tuesday, May 12, at door #6 at the church, 7400 Miller Road.

“The Swartz Creek United Methodist Church continues to bless us here at the pantry, not only with the location for us to serve from, but also with food, monetary donations, and tireless volunteering,” said Lynn Boyd, pantry chairwoman.

“COVID-19 has not deterred this community from coming together and providing food to those who need it. Thank you to the UMC for organizing this ‘drive by’ food and donation drive.”

Food, money and gift cards will be accepted; however, due to the current state of emergency guidelines, items culled from home pantries cannot be accepted.

Anyone wishing to donate is asked to purchase items that day and deliver them directly to the church. Anyone who cannot shop that day but wishes to purchase items in advance may do so if the items are stored in a garage for at least two days before delivery.

Donors should place all donations in the trunks of their vehicles. Volunteers will unload the items. Money and gift cards should be placed in envelopes in the trunk.

Workers will wear gloves and masks to keep donors safe.

Items most in need are bags of apples, oranges, potatoes, onions and loaves of bread. Also, laundry and cleaning supplies, personal hygiene products such as toothpaste, soap, shampoo, etc., are needed.

The food pantry, which serves some 600 residents of the Swartz Creek Community Schools district every month, is a collective outreach of the Methodist Church, Messiah Lutheran Church and St. Mary Queen of Angels Catholic Church.

Every year in May, the pantry receives hundreds of pounds of donated food through the U.S. Postal Service’s Stamp Out Hunger food drive. The food drive, which was scheduled for May 9, has been postponed indefinitely due to the virus.

Additional provisions and monetary donations/gift cards come from private donors. Volunteers use the funds to purchase nonperishable food from the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan. Meijer Inc. also provides support to the pantry.

Across the country, food banks have reported upticks in the number of people seeking food assistance, and a downturn in the number of donations.

The Swartz Creek Community Food Basket is open from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays, and 10 a.m. to noon Fridays. To be eligible to receive food, clients must be residents of the Swartz Creek Community Schools district and complete a registration form.