October 2023New! Click here to download the October newsletter: UMACC October Newsletter
New! Click here to download the July 2023 newsletter!
New: Amazon Wishlist!
This month we launched our Amazon Wishlist. With the convenience of shipping straight to UMACC, you can make a food donation without leaving your couch. On the list you will find breakfast foods and snacks, among other most needed items:UMACC Amazon Wishlist
One thing we love about summer is the abundance of fresh produce! Do you garden at home? We accept donations of homegrown produce throughout the summer.
Fresh produce can be dropped off on Mondays (anytime between 8am-5:30pm) or Tuesdays (8am-12 or 2-6:30pm). If possible, please wash and bag produce in quart or gallon size bags.
If you cannot drop off at these times, please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Stores often donate expired or close-to-date products. Lidl in King of Prussia is one of them and has donated thousands of pounds of food since they opened. We are so grateful for their latest donation of tortilla chips!
This week UMACC had the privilege of running an information and fundraising table at the Philadelphia Regional Bridge Tournament. Organizer Mark Cohen invited UMACC as the charity of choice. We sold 50/50 raffle tickets, collected donations, and shared the story of UMACC with tournament participants. We hope to do more tabling events in the future as we seek to spread awareness about food insecurity and invite others to support the work that we do to end it within our own community.
For volunteers who work 5+ shifts, we are now offering UMACC T-shirts. We are lucky to have such dedicated volunteers who have all earned their T-shirts by a long shot!
UMACC in the News
Earlier this month Petrucci’s Ice Cream and Water Ice in King of Prussia hosted a fundraiser to benefit UMACC. CBS News Philly promoted the event a few days before. Check out the clip here: UMACC-Petrucci’s Fundraiser
As June comes to a close, we are reflecting on how much we’ve grown in the past 5 years. UMACC opened its doors in June of 2018 to serve a handful of families. This month we served 217 unique households! Thank you for partnering with us to serve families in UMASD.
This month we want to highlight our amazing volunteers who work countless hours each week at the pantry. We could not do what we do without them!On May 13th we had the annual volunteer appreciation picnic.
Volunteers describe their work and experience at UMACC:
“Since I started, UMACC has been nothing less than a supportive and kind environment to volunteer at. I have always felt welcome and enjoyed the cordial relationships between my fellow volunteers and our patrons. Whether it’s sharing gratitude or discussing our shared experiences, I have never felt more at home at UMACC.” – Billy Moser, 4 years at UMACC
“I originally signed up just to help out a little bit and see what it was all about. It didn’t take long to find myself wanting to do the best job I could for the patrons, the cupboard, and other volunteers. It also makes me humbly appreciate the life that I have.” – John Staley, 1.5 years at UMACC
“I love making a difference and seeing the “relief” in people knowing they are not alone. My family grew up needing help, so I understand how they feel.” – Elaine Berman, 5 years at UMACC
“I volunteer at UMACC because it’s a great way to give back to the UM community. I firmly believe that lessening food insufficiency is paramount to children doing better in school, adults performing better in the workplace, and increasing family stability and overall health.” – Jen Schauble, 5 years at UMACC
Thank you to community members Katie and Matt Mizak for organizing and delivering a generous collection of diapers, wipes, and baby food totaling over 400lbs!
Do you have a birthday coming up? Consider hosting a food collection instead of receiving gifts this year. Thank you to Vicki Meitus for doing just that! Birthday drives spread awareness in our community, encourage generosity within our friend circles, and help stock our shelves. For more information or to receive our Top 10 Donations list, please email email@example.com
This spring we hosted a volunteer group from the Women’s Network from Merck & Co. They tackled a few spring-cleaning projects, which included scrubbing and color coding our milk crates. Thank you!
Interested in volunteering? Here is the link to our 2023 SignUp: https://signup.com/go/BToRzNb
A Huge Thank You to all of Our Restaurant and Store Partners
This month we want to highlight our restaurant and store partners who donate food and toiletries to UMACC
on a regular basis. We have an incredible team of volunteers who pick up donations each week. Restaurants and grocery stores follow food safety guidelines to properly bag and store
leftover food. This food is then donated to organizations like UMACC.
We are so grateful to have partnerships with multiple restaurants and grocery stores in the area. These donations not only help feed our families, but they also reduce food waste in our community.
Wegmans & Villanova Partnership
In addition to hosting a food drive for the month of February, Wegmans and Villanova University donated $2,500 worth of Wegmans gift cards to UMACC.
Stephen Mann, Life Scout
We want to express our sincere gratitude to Life Scout, Stephen Mann, and other members of Troop 551 who worked with Stephen on his Eagle Scout project. We also want to thank Scout Master Brett Montich, the parents of the Boy Scouts, and the UMACC volunteers who helped with construction.
The project refurbished the walkway from the UMACC to the parking lot. It included a new concrete entrance and exit to the walkway, new foundation posts, and replacement wood decking. This was an important project since the walkway supports heavy food deliveries to and from the Cupboard as well as the many shopping cart trips taken on Tuesdays when we are open for distribution.
April is National Volunteer Month
Each week between 60-70 volunteers help at the Pantry. They restock shelves, pick up donated food, sort and date-check donations, deliver food to homebound families, and so much more! We could not do this good work without them. Looking to join our team? Check out open slots here: 2023 UMACC Volunteer SignUp
As mentioned in last month’s newsletter and seen on multiple news sources, SNAP Emergency Allotments ended with the last payment to families in February. These were additional funds given to families at the end of each month throughout the pandemic. While families will continue receiving a SNAP payment at the start of the month, the cut of the emergency allotments will be a huge challenge to many.
At the UMACC, we have already seen an increase in households utilizing the pantry each week, making Tuesday distributions extremely busy. We now serve 130-150 families each week. This increase in household counts has meant an increase in the amount of food and patron supplies purchased each week
In light of SNAP reductions, we are so grateful to have the volunteers, storage space, and operational process in place in order to scale up to meet the needs of this community. Our mission is to nurture food sufficiency, compassion, and community in the Upper Merion Area School District.
As the need increases, so will our reach. We will continue to supply groceries each week to families in need, which includes meat, produce, dairy, eggs, and nonperishable offerings. While some of what we distribute is donated product, we still spend an additional $16,000 every month on food staples.
Would you consider partnering with UMACC in this work by becoming a monthly sustaining supporter or by making a one-time donation?
To make a donation, please go to: http://www.umacc.org/donate
If your company matches your gift, please apply for this support after you make your donation.
With Deep Appreciation,
Alice Budno Hope
Chairman of the Board and President, UMACC
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