Food And Drinks

DVIDS – News – Across the State and now in Detroit, Soldiers and Airmen of MING are on duty in local Food Banks,


Michigan Guard supports Detroit Food Banks

DETROIT: Across the state, and now in Detroit, Michigan National Guard (MING) soldiers and Airmen are deployed at local food banks to ensure the state’s nonprofit food distribution network can carry out its mission despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It feels good to support the community I’ve lived in all my life and to be part of a team that does something to bring hope to people,” said US Army Pfc. Antonio Lyte, a defense attorney for the Taylor Armory in Taylor, Michigan, was activated to support the COVID-19 Spartan Joint Task Force.

The Gleaners Community Food Bank is the state’s largest charity and serves as the central clearing house for many of the state’s food banks. Most of the work done by volunteers was put on hold as the organization’s safeguards left a critical void in the operations. The volunteer void was filled by the state’s Michigan Citizen-Soldiers and Airmen of the COVID-19 Spartan Joint Task Force.

Gleaners worked with Guard members at the Oakland County Distribution Warehouses. This work not only continued through 2021 but also expanded to two other Gleaners locations in Detroit.

“Removing security guards working in the warehouse made a huge difference,” said Gerry Brisson, president and chief executive officer of Gleaners Community Food Bank Detroit. “The day-to-day work of the Michigan National Guard has a huge impact on our work. During the pandemic crisis, Gleaners expanded its food distribution by more than 40 percent to reach 150,000 households every month. “

“We are honored and grateful that the Michigan National Guard is with Gleaners during this time of great need. Without them we would not have made it,” he said.

The Michigan National Guard leadership praised the guards’ work.

“Members of the Michigan National Guard are part of the Detroit community. Nearly 3,000 members live, work, and raise families in the tri-county area and over 300 live in the city of Detroit,” said US Army Maj. Gen. Paul D. Rogers , Michigan National Guard Adjutant General. “This makes working with the Gleaners Community Food Bank and Auxiliary Food Bank a great opportunity to unite with all of Detroit’s citizens and continue to support Michiganders through these troubled times.”

Like many Michigan National Guard members, Lyte lives in the community he serves. In his civilian occupation he works as a technician for a communications company – he works part-time on the guard and is ready to be called if necessary. It was activated for the COVID-19 Spartan JTF in August 2020.

Lyte joined MING in November 2019 and completed his military police training course in May 2020. The mobilization for the COVID-19 is the first of its military career.

“I’m glad Gleaners reached out to the MING for help and the opportunity to lend a hand,” said Lyte. “I am committed to doing more in my community and serving my country.”

Recording date: 11/01/2021
Release Date: 01.20.2021 16:12
Story ID: 387255
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