Metro Detroit nonprofits pitching in to help workers affected by government shutdown

Organizations helping people put food on table

By Kelley Kosuda - Producer

DETROIT - Detroit has a long history of charitable organizations and nonprofits stepping up and helping those in need.

Nothing has changed with the government shutdown.

Without a paycheck coming in every week, organizations want you to reach out to them for things they can help you with -- like putting food on the table.

HOPE is an organization out of Pontiac. It was founded as a community response to a homeless person freezing to death in downtown in the city. Since that time, the center has provided emergency shelter for individuals struggling with homelessness in northern Oakland County. HOPE also helps people getting back on their feet when paying back bills and finding food.

“We’re really good at connecting people with resources,” said Elizabeth Kelly, one of the executive directors.

“We don’t want anyone to lose their home just because they don’t know there’s a resource out there to help them. We don’t want anyone to go hungry because there are resources for food” she said.

There’s also counseling and advisors that can help you find local agencies that can find you help.

Another couple of nonprofits making sure federal workers know it’s there to help: United Way and Gleaners.

“For a lot people, the first time they miss a paycheck, is the first time they go ‘now what do I do’? And they don’t know how to get help or where to get help," Gerry Brisson, president of Gleaners, said. "So we want to make sure anyone affected by this crisis knows how to get help.”

Gleaners Food Bank and the United Way for Southeastern Michigan are partnering to make available free food boxes for federal workers affected by the government shutdown. Federal workers will be able to show up to any one of the 11 distribution sites in southeast Michigan to pick up their 25-pound box of food.

In order to receive a box of food, every federal worker must present their federally issued employee ID card and a valid ID. The boxes will be given out until each site runs out.

Hours will vary by location so feel free to call ahead before arriving to your nearest distribution site. You can also call The United Way for Southeastern Michigan at 211, which can help direct you to the closest location offering food support.

You don’t have to be unemployed or homeless to receive this help.

Click here for more information about Gleaners and United Way. Click here for information on the food boxes.

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