C&L Ward, Flint Firebirds partner for ‘Stuff the Truck’

DAVISON and FLINT – C&L Ward has partnered with the Flint Firebirds Hockey Team for their 3rd annual “Stuff the Truck” food, toiletries and winter wear drive to benefit Catholic Charities’ three Soup Kitchens and Center for Hope Community Closet.

The event, which will kick off Catholic Charities’ ‘25 Days of Giving’ promotion in conjunction with WEYI/WSMH NBC 25/Fox 66, will be held Wednesday, Nov. 23 (the day before Thanksgiving).

The goal is to fill one or more of C&L Ward’s trucks with non-perishable canned goods and other food, toiletries, warm clothing and household items such as blankets during the event. Monetary donations will be accepted, as well.

The truck will be at Dort Federal Event Center at noon for donations and the event with fun and refreshments will take place from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. for the Flint Firebirds game that evening.

There will be a free ticket to that night’s Firebirds game for fans who donate three or more items and/or one coat or blanket (one ticket, per person present, per three items).

In addition, C&L Ward will offer refreshments and a chance to register for a VIP ticket and merchandise package for the Dec. 2 Firebirds game and C&L Ward’s 10K Home Makeover.

In addition to the drive, the Flint Firebirds will donate that evening’s earnings from the 50/50 drawing to Catholic Charities.

Those wishing to drop off donations prior to Nov. 23 may do so at the Dort Federal Event Center, C&L Ward’s Davison located at 9284 Lapeer Road, or Catholic Charities’ North End Soup Kitchen located at 735 East Stewart Avenue, Flint.

Tickets for the November 23rd game will be available at each of these locations when the donation is made.

“There are so many individuals and families in our community who are struggling to get by; I think this is especially true during the holiday season,” Vicky Schultz, president and CEO of Catholic Charities commented. “We are so grateful to C&L Ward for joining Catholic Charities and the Flint Firebirds to help those in need, and for their ongoing commitment to giving back to our community.”

“We have worked with Catholic Charities in the past and understand the real and immediate need in our community for not only hot meals from the soup kitchen but toiletries, clothing and household items for those that the community closet serves,” stated Michelle Shook, vice president of Marketing and Communications for C & L Ward. “We chose the day before Thanksgiving to show our gratitude to this wonderful community who has been so supportive of us for the last 44 years.

“We feel that people will be shopping for their own Thanksgiving feasts during this time, so we want to encourage them to buy a little extra and bring it to the game to help us fill our van so those in need have these items during the cold winter months. The Flint Firebirds are a great partner of ours and expanding the event for its third year has been a huge benefit to Catholic Charities.”

“We are honored to be partnering with our sponsor C&L Ward to help ‘Stuff the Truck’ for Catholic Charities and help kick off the 25 Days of Giving with NBC 25/Fox 66,” said Susana Wight, director of Community Relations and Marketing for the Flint Firebirds. “They provide such an important service to our community.”

Catholic Charities’ three Soup Kitchens served more than 197,000 meals to Genesee County residents last year and rely heavily on donations to make this possible. They accept non-perishable food items, cutlery kits, cups, napkins, and monetary donations. Foods most needed currently are: pasta, tomato sauce, canned vegetables, canned meat, rice, beans, boxed potatoes, stuffing and canned fruit.

Catholic Charities’ Center for Hope Community Closet distributes toiletries, household items and clothing to the less fortunate. They are most in need of bar soap, dish soap, laundry soap, shampoo, toothpaste, toilet paper and deodorant. They accept travel-sized and hotel toiletries.

In addition, there is an urgent need for new or gently used winter items such as hats, gloves, mittens, coats, snow pants, boots, blankets, etc., for all ages, especially for children. They have distributed more than 900 coats since October 1 of this year and need many more. As a side note, any clothing needing repair should be put in a separate bag and labeled. Catholic Charities has volunteers who will repair the items, making them wearable for the recipients.

C&L Ward does several fundraisers throughout the year including an annual breast cancer fundraiser, their annual roof giveaway and their “Likes for Dollars” Facebook campaign which benefits organizations in Genesee County, the Great Lakes Bay region, Metro Detroit and Greater Lansing. — L.R.

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