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OCEF keeps on giving

Linda Mizejewski and Tiffany Graves, OCEF volunteers, worked at the Thanksgiving distribution Monday at St. Anne Church, 825 S. Ortonville Road. Photo by Susan Bromley. (click for larger version)
November 24, 2010 - Brandon Twp.- Outside St. Anne Church on Monday, more than two dozen people waited in line in the rain.

Inside the church, a small army of Ortonville Community Emergency Fund volunteers stood in the center of a hall, surrounded by hundreds of paper grocery bags loaded with food. In minutes, those waiting outside would come in, and the volunteers would distribute the food, helping fill the Thanksgiving tables of 186 families in the Brandon School District.

"We estimate we've gotten more food this year than in the last five years," said Food Pantry Director Gwen Koss.

Added OCEF Volunteer Karen Kubik, "18,000 food items were donated for the Thanksgiving food drive. We need all of that for Christmas, too."

Kubik, Koss, and all the OCEF volunteers are grateful for a community that stepped up to help the less fortunate in the area and are hoping to receive more support for the Christmas season.

OCEF kicks off the Christmas food collection drive with "Cans for a Candy Cane." OCEF volunteers will walk in the Christmas Parade planned for 4 p.m., Dec. 4 in Ortonville.

"We are encouraging our wonderful community to further support our holiday effort by bringing a can or a boxed food item to the parade and in return we will give you a candy cane for helping support our holiday mission," said OCEF President Karyn Milligan-Thompson. "We will have many OCEF volunteers walking in the parade to collect your gifts."

Additionally, the OCEF "Cans for Christmas" vintage Studebaker truck will be in the Bueche's parking lot from 9 a.m.-noon, Dec. 4, and from 1-4 p.m., Dec. 11.

OCEF is also currently working on the "Adopt-a-Family" program.

To learn how to adopt a family for Christmas or to donate food for Christmas distribution to needy families, call Gwen Koss at 248-627-3965, ext. 103

Susan covers Brandon Township and Ortonville
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