Nearly everyone has heard the phrase, “Milk does a body good,” right?
Well, the beverage many of us grew up on is in short supply at many of the nation’s food banks that bring all important sustenance to so many in need in our communities. “The Great American Milk Drive” is looking to meet that need and nourish thousands of families. Locally, Gleaners Community Food Bank, Forgotten Harvest, dairy farmers and Country Fresh are teaming to help inspire Detroiters put an end to a food crisis … one gallon at a time.
Since April of this year, Feeding America has partnered with local companies like Country Fresh to get gallons into the homes of hungry families through the Milk Drive. Thanks to the program a click of the mouse or a text (text “Milk” to 27722) can deliver nutrition to 1.6 million hungry families in Michigan and some of the more than 37 million Americans served by Feeding America each year.
The Great American Milk Drive is already delivering gallons milk to thousands of Americans across the country, and in honor of Hunger Action Month, will deliver an added 5,000 gallons to food banks in the state that generates the most donations in September. We want Michigan to win.
Since the Drive began only 1,130 gallons of milk have been donated across Michigan. Through the texts and clicks from people in the community, organizers are hoping to get that number up quite a bit and you can help.
- Online: Donate milk to families in need for as little as $5.00 at www.milklife.com/give or via text message (text “Milk” to 27722). By entering your zip code, you can ensure that the milk is delivered to a local Feeding America food bank like Gleaners or Forgotten Harvest.
- In-store: Retailers, including more than 2,000 Kroger Stores, are featuring The Great American Milk Drive at their check-out counters.
“This Drive is very important for hungry families right here in Michigan,” said Anne Schenk, vice president of marketing and communications at Gleaners. “While September is Hunger Action Month, we want to make sure families get the food they need whenever they need it.”
Milk is a staple for many families but economic challenges sometimes mean a lack of basic food, including milk. Organizations like Gleaners and Forgotten Harvest provide fresh foods and other items, thanks to donations, but have not been able to provide much of this much-requested item. Organizers say there is a nationwide shortage, because it is rarely donated.
The need is great.
“Many Americans are pressured financially because of economic stress, which means more people are turning to their local food bank for help. Compared to four years ago, one million more people are looking for emergency food assistance from the Feeding America network each week,” according to Bob Aiken, CEO of Feeding America.
A study by Feeding America (Hunger in America 2014) shows when milk isn’t available through the food banks people often choose unhealthy drink options, which affects overall health and well-being.
“Milk can really do a body good,” according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). “With just eight grams of high-quality protein per serving and three of the top nutrients most likely to be missing in the American diet – calcium, vitamin D and potassium – milk is an affordable, efficient way for America’s feeding programs to get nutrients into the hands of people who need it,” says Jennifer Shu, MD, FAAP, medical editor of Healthy Children.org, the parenting website of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
Remember you can help. Go to www.milklife.com/give or via text message (text “Milk” to 27722) and donate. It will do your body … and your soul … good.