NEMCSA to conduct second food giveaway

OSSINEKE — The Northeast Michigan Community Service Agency will conduct a second food giveaway Thursday after the success of the first event held earlier this year.

NEMCSA Assistant Food Program Coordinator Tammy Dean said the event will take place at the Ossineke United Methodist Church from 5-7 p.m. or until the food is gone.

She said the giveaway program is through the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan.

“We were contacted by the food bank to partner with them in order to get fresh produce out in our counties in our area,” she said.

According to Dean the program has been free from the food bank, which has donated the fresh fruit and vegetables to NEMCSA.

She said the program has been taking place not only in Alpena County but in surrounding counties. There is no income requirement, she said, and people are welcome to come and get some free produce.

This will be the second giveaway through the program. Dean said the first was extremely successful.

Dean said in the first giveaway there were 650 individuals served who came from 272 households.

“I had 10 pallets of product and there was 8,182 pounds of food that was given out,” said Dean.

The produce included assorted fruit, cabbage, cucumbers, squash, sweet corn, watermelon and potatoes.

Dean said the program is a good way to help supply people with items that are not cheap in a lot of cases.

“If we all think about it, we can go to the store and we can buy sweet pop and chips so much cheaper than you can get fresh produce,” she said. “There are a lot of programs out there that people are not aware of and you have food banks that are closing down. So anything we can get to help these families is awesome.”

Dean said there will be long lines at the event.

“People need to be patient and there will be lines,” she said. “But by the time they do the sign in process, it doesn’t take long to get through, it’s just a matter of being patient.”

She said people should only take what they need.

“Be respectful of the line behind them and only take what you need and what you can use before it goes bad because a lot of people want this,” she said.

Jason Ogden can be reached via email at jogden@thealpenanews.com or by phone at 358-5693. Follow Jason on Twitter @jo_alpenanews.