Employees of Chesapeake Utilities, a business that sells and delivers natural gas across Delmarva, volunteered at the Milford Food Bank of Delaware on Wednesday, November 20 to help pack and deliver Thanksgiving boxes to over 250 local families in need. The event coincided with a $21,000 donation made by Chesapeake Utilities to host Thanksgiving food distributions in both Kent and Sussex Counties. Throughout the week, 1,000 meal boxes filled with 30 pounds of holiday staples, including a frozen turkey, were distributed to area families by volunteers from Chesapeake Utilities Corporation.
Last year Chesapeake Utilities sponsored the Food Bank of Delaware Thanksgiving meal box distribution with approximately 75 volunteers including employees and their families helping to package dinners for the less fortunate. This year, over 120 individuals helped out from the company over two counties. Sydney Davis, External Communications Manager at Chesapeake Utilities, shared that the company’s involvement began as a way to help employees come together to help their community.
“Many of our employees were already getting out there and helping those less fortunate in their own communities,” commented Davis. “The company decided that it would be nice to include all of our employees and get them together in a larger effort to help out.”
In addition to volunteering at the Milford Food Bank, the group also helped out at Food Bank locations in Georgetown and Dover last week and will continue their service as they assist the Food Bank of Delaware Mobile Pantry,which brings both shelf-stable and fresh foods directly to low-income Delawareans across the state. Rick Wunsch, who has worked for Chesapeake Utilities for 15 years was excited for the opportunity to help out.
“It is a good cause to help those that need our help locally,” commented Wunsch. “We are fortunate to work for a company that believes that giving back to the community is important.” During Wednesday’s event alone, Chesapeake Utilities helped the Food Bank of Delaware to serve over 250 families.
Continuing their effort through the holiday, the Food Bank of Delaware will be holding Holiday Food Drives and is asking for the public’s assistance in making sure that no Delawarean goes without a holiday meal this season. They are encouraging businesses, schools, faith-based organizations and other community groups to organize and host food drives. Food collected will be distributed to people in need of food assistance through the Food Bank of Delaware’s 475 hunger-relief program partners which include local churches, food pantries, shelters and low-income daycare centers.
Despite the Food Bank’s determination and efforts to end hunger in our community the number of individuals needing food assistance has continued to increase. Families and individuals who once donated their food, funds and time now need assistance themselves. The demand for food assistance in Kent and Sussex Counties has sharply increased during the last several years.
During the holiday season individuals and businesses can help with this increase in food assistance demand by hosting food drives to collect food, making a monetary donation or volunteering time at the Food Bank of Delaware. To organize a food drive, register as a volunteer or gather information on items that are in need this holiday season visit the Food Bank of Delaware at www.fbd.org.