Local charities accept Pat’s donations, prepare for holiday season

Nick Wilson/Daily Mining Gazette Cathy Aten of Little Brothers (right) and Vicky Vichich of St. Vincent de Paul’s (middle) accept donations from Pat’s Foods employee Heather Aro (left) at Pat’s Foods IGA in Hancock on Tuesday morning.

HANCOCK — On Tuesday morning, representatives from Little Brothers – Friends of the Elderly and St. Vincent de Paul’s Resurrection Conference Food Pantry accepted donations from Pat’s Foods IGA.

Each organization received a donation of $1,160, which will be used to support holiday food aid initiatives.

For more than 10 years, the annual Campioni Charity Golf Outing has raised money for local food charities. Proceeds from the event are distributed to 10 food pantries in the communities that the Campioni family’s grocery stores serve. The event raised more than $11,000 this year.

For Ben Campioni, the charity event and donations are all about giving back to the community.

“We know the need for the food pantries,” he said. “We have a fun event with our vendors and we’re able to support our local golf course, support local restaurants, and be able to raise a lot of money for the food pantries.”

As the holidays approach, these donations will help Little Brothers and St. Vincent de Paul’s provide food and other services to community members in need.

“It’s huge for us because we have so many expenses during the holidays, for our Thanksgiving and Christmas meal deliveries and our Christmas boxes that we do,” said Cathy Aten before accepting the donation on behalf of Little Brothers. “So the support we get from them [Pat’s] just means so much.”

Little Brothers is a volunteer organization that provides friendship and services to lonely or isolated elderly people. Each year, the organization’s Upper Michigan Chapter prepares 200 boxes of assorted food items, wraps them in Christmas wrapping paper, and distributes them to elderly community members.

“This makes a special Christmas gift, something that’s really fun to them and means a lot,” Aten said. “We’re really here to be a friend and give them opportunities to do things that they wouldn’t normally do.”

For St. Vincent de Paul’s, the donation will help fund holiday food cards that are given out for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

In addition to these holiday food cards, St. Vincent de Paul’s operates year-round food aid programs. The organization serves families of all denominations in Houghton County.

“People can come in once a month for a bag of food depending on the size of the household,” explained Volunteer Coordinator Vicky Vichich. “If they have between four and five people in their household it’s two bags, six or more to get three bags of food per month.

“Donations are always gratefully accepted. And we’re so grateful to Pat’s for what they do for the community and for us.”


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