Rockin’ for the Hungry raises 1.4M meals for Washtenaw County residents in need

A donor drops off a bag of food inside a Kroger store in the Ann Arbor area during 2021 Rockin' for the Hungry. (Food Gatherers)

ANN ARBOR – The annual Rockin’ for the Hungry food and fund drive successfully surpassed its goal of raising one million meals for residents in Washtenaw County experiencing food insecurity.

The event is presented in partnership by Food Gatherers, ann arbor’s 107one and Kroger.

Each year, hosts from 107one stand outside the Westgate Kroger for a five-day live broadcast “freezin’ for a reason” while interviewing community leaders, Food Gatherers staff and others.

For the 2022 event, Food Gatherers received the equivalent of 1,467,940 meals in donations.

Skyrocketing costs at grocery stores have increased demand at Food Gatherers and its numerous hunger-relief programs across Washtenaw County.

Several community sponsors matched donations to Rockin’ dollar for dollar, including:

  • The Harold and Kay Peplau Family Fund
  • Bank of Ann Arbor
  • Bruce & Mona Auerbach
  • Cardamom
  • Destination Ann Arbor
  • DTE
  • John & Cindy Nixon
  • Old National Bank
  • Sachin Kheterpal & Ruchika Gupta
  • Thomson Reuters
  • The Brummett, Edelman, and Giordano-Woodcock families

Students from Community High School raised more than $77,255 -- the equivalent of more than 231,000 meals -- before being matched.

Food Gatherers reported a total of 3,400 pounds of donated nonperishable groceries during the food drive.

This year’s Rockin’ broadcast was the last for 107one Morning Drive host Martin Bandyke, who is retiring after a 40-year career in Southeast Michigan.

“We are truly grateful to ann arbor’s 107one, Kroger, and every donor and volunteer who came out to fight hunger where they live,” Food Gatherers President and CEO Eileen Spring said in a statement. “Food insecurity can only be solved by a community that cares and works together, and Washtenaw County proved that it does both.”

About the Author:

Meredith has worked for WDIV since August 2017 and was voted one of Washtenaw County's best journalists in 2019 by eCurrent's readers. She covers the community of Ann Arbor and has a Master's degree in International Broadcast Journalism from City University London, UK.