Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts work together to benefit Gleaners Community Food Bank

 DETROIT— Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts in the Detroit area are partnering to collect more than 250,000 pounds of food during the week of November 4-11 as part of their third annual “Scouting for Food” drive to benefit Gleaners Community Food Bank of Southeastern Michigan.

 On Saturday, November 4, Scouts will distribute bags in neighborhoods throughout their service areas, which include communities stretching from Wayne to Oakland and Macomb Counties, and Sanilac and Monroe Counties. Individuals who receive Scouting for Food bags are encouraged to fill them with non-perishable canned or boxed foods - glass containers will not be accepted - and place the bags on their porches for Scouts to pick-up by Saturday, November 11.

 Gleaners will distribute the donated food items to individuals in need in Detroit-area communities.  Last year, Gleaners distributed more than 34 million pounds of food to soup kitchens, shelters and pantries in southeast Michigan.

               “The Scouting for Food drive helps Gleaners fill our partner agency pantry shelves before the holidays,” said Gerry Brisson, Gleaners’ President and CEO. “With colder weather approaching, many struggling families will be forced to choose between paying heating bills and buying food for their families. The donations from this drive help make sure that these families receive the support they need.”

 The Boy Scouts of America established Scouting for Food as a region wide service project in 1988.  Vic Pooler, Scout Executive for the BSA’s Great Lakes Field Service Council, said the food drive meets a need for Gleaners at a critical time of the year for its clients.

 “Scouting for Food has been a tradition of Boy Scouts of America nationally for over 30 years,” Pooler said. “This longstanding commitment to community service is what Scouting is all about, and partnering with our local Girl Scouts is a wonderful way for more Scouts to canvass areas in our region to provide more food for those in need before the holidays arrive and the demand becomes so much greater.”

 More than 800 Boy Scout units with the Michigan Crossroads Council, the statewide Boy Scout organization that manages the Great Lakes FSC, and Girl Scout troops with Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan are expected to distribute bags and collect food.

              “The Girl Scout Mission focuses on building girls who make the world a better place, and that’s exactly what Scouting for Food allows our girls to do,” said Denise Dalrymple, CEO of Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan. “The steady incline of participation from our troops each year truly speaks volumes about the kindness and generosity of our girls and volunteers, and their commitment to living out the Girl Scout Promise and Law. We are truly grateful to be a part of making a difference in the lives of so many families in need.”

              Last year, the Scouts collected close to 200,000 pounds of food for Gleaners, and since the inception of its partnership with Gleaners in 2009, the Boy Scouts have collected more than 2,000,000 pounds of food donations for the organization.

 About Boy Scouts of America, Michigan Crossroads Council:

The Michigan Crossroads Council, Boy Scouts of America provides a variety of youth development and camping programs that promote character, leadership, and life skills to nearly 68,000 Michigan boys and girls. More information on the Michigan Crossroads Council can be found at michiganscouting.org.

 About GSSEM

GSSEM is the local council chartered by Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) to facilitate the Girl Scout Leadership Experience (GSLE), designed to help girls develop leadership skills through three key elements—Discover, Connect and Take Action. Each element has a set of five outcomes including girls develop a strong sense of self (Discover); girls develop healthy relationships (Connect); and girls can identify community needs (Take Action). GSSEM serves more than 32,000 girls and adult volunteers in Oakland, Macomb, Genesee, Lapeer, St. Clair, Sanilac, Monroe and most of Wayne County. GSSEM provides a girl-led, girl-centered, fun-filled quality leadership experience. For more information about GSSEM, visit www.gssem.org.

 About Gleaners Community Food Bank

For 40 years, Gleaners Community Food Bank has been "feeding hungry people and nourishing our communities." Last year, Gleaners distributed more than 38 million pounds of emergency food to over 534 partner schools, soup kitchens, shelters and pantries in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Livingston and Monroe counties. Of every dollar donated, Gleaners uses 95 cents for food and food programs. One dollar provides three meals for a hungry neighbor. For more information, visit www.gcfb.org

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