United Way seeks to restock area food pantries during ‘Christmas in June’

SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN — United Way of Southwest Michigan’s annual “Christmas in June” food drive for local pantries kicks off today to benefit 38 pantries in Berrien, Cass and Van Buren counties.

Every year, food pantries across southwest Michigan are fully stocked in the winter months thanks to holiday donations, but when summer comes, pantry shelves are sparse. This can leave low-income families with limited options during this time, and more families than ever need help this year, according to United Way officials.

So, for the fourth year in a row, United Way of Southwest Michigan is asking local businesses and community members to participate in its “Christmas in June” event to stock local food pantries with items to get them through the warmer months.

United Way is also making it safer and easier than ever because it is doing the shopping. Residents can visit the “Christmas in June” page at uwsm.org and pick how much they want to spend, and United Way will make sure each pantry gets exactly what they need.

For example, a $10 gift provides the ability to purchase 28 items, which will provide 13 meals for a family of four, which should last them three days. A $150 gift provides the ability to purchase 402 items which will provide 138 meals for a family of four. There are food baskets and shopping charts in various dollar amounts in between.

“We had to come up with a different way of helping food pantries this year, and our ‘digital food drive’ is simple and easy since it can be done without even leaving home,” said Charlotte Becker, director of the annual campaign at United Way of Southwest Michigan. “The need is tremendous this year, and everyone who donates will make a big impact on families in our community.”

“Christmas in June” is part of a worldwide United Way “Day of Action” effort, hosted in June, during which tens of thousands of people across the globe volunteer with local United Ways to fight for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community.

Join United Way in bringing some cheer to local pantries again this June! Visit uwsm.org to help.

Berrien County

COVID-19 UPDATE: Michigan sees 117,406 cases, 6,665 deaths

Dowagiac

Dowagiac City Council authorizes loans for sanitary sewer improvements

News

Local organization hosts voter registration, cookout

Berrien County

Michigan Works! announces support for front line workers

Dowagiac

Sept. 21 Dowagiac weather report

Berrien County

Michigan Teen Safe Driving program enters 10th year

Berrien County

Free virtual cancer symposium open to providers, public

Education

Niles Community Schools’ remote platform allows students to go at own pace

Business

Dowagiac business donates backpacks, school supplies to students in need

Cassopolis

Miss Cassopolis Scholarship Program hosting school supply drive

Berrien County

Berrien County Health department gets blunt on marijuana education, safety

Cass County

Two Dowagiac men sentenced Friday in Cass County Court

Cass County

Cass County works to expand broadband access

Edwardsburg

Ontwa Township passes 2.25 percent millage increase

Berrien County

Local talent development leader honored by Michigan Works! Association

Cassopolis

Cassopolis awards preliminary marijuana licenses

News

Niles police chief looks forward to continuing work with city, two departments

Cass County

North Pointe Center class partners with church for cemetery cleanup project

Berrien County

COVID-19 UPDATE: Michigan sees 113,863 cases, 6,623 deaths

Cassopolis

Cass County to partake in annual Crop Hunger Walk

Brandywine Education

Performing Arts Workshops launches memorial fundraising campaign

News

Court of Appeals rules secretary Benson acted lawfully in mailing absentee voter ballot applications to registered voters

Dowagiac

SMC welcomes new dean of business, advanced technology

Dowagiac

Dowagiac Elks to host annual Guys & Dolls Golf Outing