With the holiday season upon us, it is a reminder to us all to practice gratitude. Millions of individuals around the country are not as fortunate to make the holiday season magical for their families. In Detroit specifically, many households struggle with food insecurity and are not able provide a holiday meal on their own.

With the help of over 400 volunteers from all over Southeast Michigan, and our community partners, we were able to deliver holiday food boxes to 1,400, low-income seniors as a way to spread cheer to those who need it most. Our annual Senior Holiday Delivery Event supports senior citizens in four counties — Wayne, Oakland, Macomb and Washtenaw. The special holiday packages included fresh fruits and vegetables, turkey, stuffing, non-perishable items and dessert, as well as gifts for those homes who have young children living in them.

Focus: HOPE Director of Development, Ashleigh Dunham delivering a holiday food box to Gracie Anderson.

“Focus: HOPE has truly been such a blessing in my life,” said Gracie Anderson, Focus: HOPE Food Program recipient. “Without Focus: HOPE, I wouldn’t have a holiday meal to enjoy with my family. If I ever win the lottery, I’d give back to Focus: HOPE.”

The seniors who were visited on December 17 are current recipients in our food program, and receive monthly, non-perishable supplemental food boxes. We feed 41,300 low-income seniors on a monthly-basis and have delivered over 24 million food boxes since 1971.

All of this would not be possible if it was not for our dedicated volunteers and community partners who sponsored our event, volunteered when it was needed and supported Focus: HOPE. Thank you to everyone who came to our Senior Holiday Delivery Event and went out in the crazy weather to ensure that our seniors, who should be enjoying their golden years, are set up with a complete holiday meal to enjoy with their loved ones.

Focus: HOPE Director of Development, Ashleigh Dunham and Focus: HOPE Volunteer, Drew Patrick delivering a holiday food box to a food program recipient.

Interview of a Senior Holiday Delivery Volunteer

Interview of a Senior Holiday Delivery Volunteer

A special thanks to our presenting sponsor, DENSO, who is helping to double the impact Focus: HOPE is making this holiday season by matching all online donations made to our organization by December 31, 2016! You can double your donation today.

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“Connecting with our community is important to our company and our people,” said Bill Foy, Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing, DENSO International America, Inc. “DENSO is committed to building a strong community where our employees, family, friends and neighbors can grow and prosper.”

Focus: HOPE CEO, Jason D. Lee; DENSO, Program Manager, Community Affairs, Melissa Smith; and Melissa Smith’s daughter at Focus: HOPE’s Senior Holiday Delivery Event

DENSO has been a Focus: HOPE partner since 1999, supporting with monetary donations, the annual Focus: HOPE Walk, food program and workforce development programs. The matching online donations provided by DENSO will support our numerous programs that open opportunities for brighter futures.

DENSO, Program Manager, Community Affairs, Melissa Smith on why DENSO is sponsoring our Senior Holiday Delivery Event

“During the holidays, we want to make sure that our seniors are able to enjoy a special meal in their own home,”. Although the monthly food boxes they receive contain plenty of nutritious items, this annual holiday box provides them with a holiday meal that allows them to celebrate with their loved ones in their own home.”

Jason D. LeeFocus: HOPE CEO

Volunteers from Oakland University’s Hockey Team loading up cars to deliver holiday boxes to low-income seniors.

For the Senior Holiday Delivery Event, volunteers packed and picked up the food boxes between 8-10 a.m. on December 17 at our Food Warehouse. There, they were provided with addresses to deliver the packages to, and other staff and volunteers helped load their vehicles for the deliveries.

Interview of Senior Holiday Delivery volunteers

The Motor City Cruisers and Professional Lady Riders, who have been coming out to help seniors in need at Focus: HOPE’s Senior Holiday Delivery Program for 12 years

United Way and GM Volunteers at Focus: HOPE’s Senior Holiday Delivery Program.

Monetary donations can be made online by clicking on this link!  and will be matched by DENSO $ for $ through December 31, 2016.

For a full gallery of photos from the event, please Click Here!

Thank you again to our volunteers, presenting sponsor DENSO, and our other sponsors and supporters for helping us spread holiday cheer to 1,400, low-income senior citizens throughout 4 counties.

Focus: HOPE employees & volunteers helping out during the Senior Holiday Delivery Program

Wishing you and your families a Happy Holiday and prosperous New Year!

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