During the month of April, employees at Southern Maine Health Care (SMHC) held a food drive and quilt raffle to benefit the Biddeford Food Pantry. Collection boxes were delivered to 21 SMHC locations and the staff filled them with nearly 2,000 pounds of nourishing, non-perishable food to help feed hungry families. The quilt was handmade by four SMHC staff members to help support the fundraiser. Cash donations and proceeds from the quilt raffle totaling $1,100 were also donated to help the Pantry purchase food supplies.
"We are truly grateful for the hard work that you have done for the hungry people of Biddeford," said Biddeford Food Pantry Manager Don Bisson. "The food drive was a big boost for our pantry and our shelves are filled. Your efforts more than demonstrate that SMHC is very much community focused."
The food drive was organized by SMHC’s Giving Back Task Force, which is comprised of staff from across the organization. It holds two fundraisers each year to benefit the communities SMHC serves. The Task Force’s mission is to enable SMHC employees to give back to its communities through volunteer opportunities and by providing financial support. It will do so by coordinating and communicating these activities while focusing its efforts in the SMHC service area and on food insecurity.
About Southern Maine Health Care
Southern Maine Health Care (SMHC) is a national award-winning healthcare system with a non-profit mission “to improve the health and health care of the communities we serve.” SMHC includes a full service, acute care medical center in Biddeford, with York County’s only inpatient mental health unit. Emergency care, surgical services, and diagnostic and therapy services are available at SMHC’s Medical Centers in Biddeford and Sanford. SMHC offers primary care and multi-specialty physician services, diagnostic and therapy services, and Walk-In Care centers in various York County communities including Biddeford, Kennebunk, Saco, Sanford, North Berwick and Waterboro. SMHC is Joint Commission accredited and has been recognized for quality excellence by numerous outside organizations. To learn more about SMHC and SMHC providers, visit www.smhc.org, https://www.youtube.com/c/smhcorgme, or https://twitter.com/SMHCHealth.
About Biddeford Food Pantry
The Biddeford Food Pantry was founded by Rita Riley in 1981. While Rita had been visiting an elderly woman’s home to provide assistance, the woman said that she would like to make some tea. Rita went into the kitchen to help her and discovered that she had almost nothing in the cupboards. It was then that Rita realized there was a great need in Biddeford for a means to help those who have very little money to afford food. Deeply troubled by the lack of an existing option to assist people in need, Rita began to collect food in her garage, an effort which eventually became the Biddeford Food Pantry. We are here today continuing the mission that began over 33 years ago in Rita’s garage. Our goal has always been to help feed the hungry of Biddeford by providing quality food at no cost to our clients. To make a donation or learn more visit www.biddefordfoodpantry.org
Photo Caption: Members of SMHC’s Giving Back Task Force and SMHC leadership presented the Biddeford Food Pantry with nearly 2,000 pounds of food and $1,100 in cash donated by SMHC employees to benefit hungry families in the community. Pictured are (left) Kate-Lynn Ayer, Katie Huff, Jane Foley, Missy Nadeau, COO Patsy Aprile (right) Tina Turgeon, Biddeford Food Pantry Manager Don Bisson, Arlene Carroll, CFO Rick Olsen and President and CEO Ed McGeachey.