Schuette, Secretary of State Johnson, Food Bank Council Kick Off 2017 Michigan Harvest Gathering

Contact: Andrea Bitely, Megan Hawthorne; (517) 373-8060

September 27, 2017

LANSING – Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette, Secretary of State Ruth Johnson, and Phil Knight of the Food Bank Council of Michigan today kicked off the 27th Annual Michigan Harvest Gathering at the Cristo Rey Community Center in Lansing.

“Thanksgiving and Christmas are common times for food drives, but food banks across Michigan need our support all year around. Hunger doesn’t check the calendar,” said Schuette. “The simple act of grabbing an extra can of soup or box of noodles can help our friends and neighbors in need.”

Food insecurity and hunger rates differ by county. In Michigan, 15% of households struggle to put food on the table, and 18% of children are unsure of their next meal.

“Every year, I am moved by how many people donate generously to Harvest Gathering and how much our staff has embraced this important effort,” Johnson said. “We see it every fall in every office across the state when we open our doors to collect food. Michigan residents dropped off 11 tons of food last year at our offices. I encourage people to again share what they can.”

Michigan Secretary of State offices are collecting non-expired, nonperishable food donations through Nov. 22.

“Once we conquer food insecurity, we can solve hunger,” said Dr. Phil Knight, executive director, Food Bank Council of Michigan. “Michigan Harvest Gathering is a way to raise awareness as we work to make Michigan a food secure state.”

About the Michigan Harvest Gathering and Cristo Rey Community Center

The Michigan Harvest Gathering (MHG) is an annual statewide campaign that raises food and funds for Michigan’s emergency food response. Since 1991, Schuette and his wife Cynthia have partnered with the Food Bank Council of Michigan to help strengthen the capacity of our state’s emergency food response. In its first 27 years, the MHG Campaign collected food and funds equivalent to 72 million meals to help those in need.

Cristo Rey Community Center is a 501(C)(3) basic-needs provider serving vulnerable populations with an emphasis on access to medical care, mental health services, food, and financial counseling. Cristo Rey is a recipient of donations from the Michigan Harvest Gathering.

For more information on the Michigan Harvest Gathering, visit