Shores Bank Gives "Hope"
Employees from Citizens Bank donate time at the Hope Center food bank.
Dorothy Jackson spent Saturday afternoon pushing a grocery cart down the aisles at the Hope Center in Fraser.
As she pushed her cart, with her daugther holding onto the side, Jackson selected a number of groceries including canned vegetables, bread and potatoes that were recently placed on the shelves by volunteers from the Citizens Bank branch in St. Clair Shores, as well as those from branches in other cities.
"There is a good variety of canned goods here," said Jackson, of Warren, who learned about the Hope Center through her church. "This saves me a lot of money in groceries."
The Hope Center provides food and other services to residents throughout Macomb County. The center is unique because there are no income requirements to utilize its services, just proof of residency in Macomb County.
Clients meet with volunteers when they arrive at the center to determine the amount of food they will receive, as well as if there are other services they can use at Hope Center.
These services are in greater demand in recent weeks, according to Chet Decker, executive director of the center.
"We try to give (clients) dignity, warmth and assistance," Decker said. "We don't disqualify anyone. If they need food, we get them food."
He said 85,000 pounds of food were distributed last month, and client appointments have increased from three per quarter hour to four per quarter hour in recent weeks.
"As we continue to grow, we are going to need volunteers," said Decker, who appreciated the help from Citizens and looks to bring in other Macomb County churches to help.
This past Saturday, as Jackson selected her groceries, a team of 15 volunteers from Citizens Bank worked tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure the shelves were stocked and people who had appointments were seen quickly.
"I wish I could (volunteer) more often," said Amy Reed, who works at the St. Clair Shores branch. "It is a great honor to do this."
As Reed worked in the warehouse, Diana Martin, manager of the St. Clair Shores branch and organizer of the volunteer effort, worked at the front desk. "I thought this was a good thing to do and organize," Martin said.
Martin answered questions from people in the lobby directed phone callers to social services organizations. "It is so important to treat people with diginity and respect," she said.