Ventra food drive a huge success

Donations benefit Sears Food Pantry

EVART — Local residents in need of a quality meal will be able to keep their pantry stocked for a bit longer, thanks to donations to the Sears Food Pantry from a number of Ventra employees.

A 14-foot trailer and pickup truck bed were filled to the top with food items of all sorts during a drive hosted by a women’s committee of United Auto Workers Local 2270. The food drive lasted for about three weeks and the employees collected more than last year, according to Heidi Pontius, chairperson for the women’s committee.

"It turned out so great and we ended up with so much food," Pontius said. "It's such a great feeling to watch the truck being unloaded knowing a child will have food on the table that night."

To help fuel the drive, members of the committee visited businesses and organizations in Evart, Marion, Reed City, Hersey and Barryton asking for raffle donations. For every food item brought in by Ventra employees, they would receive a raffle ticket for a prize. Pontius said nearly 100 items were up for grabs.

"Those businesses donated $25 here and $35 there. I couldn't believe the response," she added. "It makes me feel good because people can disagree all day long, but when something important comes up they come together as one big family."

Pontius is proud so many employees stepped up to the plate to help with the food drive and support the Sears Food Pantry.

"All the employees did such an amazing job," she added. "I was amazed this year. It's awesome to see the generosity of the area and see people stand up for those in need."