Delaware charities get a holiday boost

    Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca is giving $100,000 to “Delaware Does More”, a partnership between the United Way of Dealware and Food Bank of Delaware that helps familes struggling to pay for food shelter and utilities during the winter months.

    Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca is giving $100,000 to “Delaware Does More”, a partnership between the United Way of Delaware and Food Bank of Delaware that helps families struggling to pay for food, shelter and utilities during the winter months.

    The grant was announced at the Kingswood Community Center in Northeast Wilmington Wednesday morning.

    $50,000 dollars will go to United Way to help those who need mortgage, rent or utility assistance.  The other $50,000 will go to help fill the Food Bank’s pantries.

    “It will help significantly.” said United Way of Delaware president and CEO Michelle Taylor,  “Our goal is to raise 100,000 dollars for utilities and shelter, but we know the need is greater than that.  So, we believe this grant will help us to meet our goal, and even, I think, have a better chance of exceeding it, which means more families will have a safe haven.”

    United Way of Delaware hopes to be able to help between 500 and 1,000 people this winter through “Delaware Does More”.

    The Food Bank of Delaware says the $50,000 dollars its receiving will go a long way.  They estimate each dollar they receive equals just over four and a quarter pounds of food.

    “This $50,000 equals to us about 228,000 pounds of food.” said Food Bank president and CEO Patricia Beebe.  “So, $50,000 dollars to an organization like the Food Bank of Delaware means a lot.”

    And the impact is immediate.

    “We ensure that the funds raised are immediately distributed and allocated to our program agencies throughout the state, so that they can go to the families that need it the most.” Taylor said.

    “Its a direct turn around.  We’ll use the resources to get food out to people.” said Beebe, “It’s what Delaware Does More is all about, collecting food and getting it out to people.  It’s a very simple program.”

    Berquette Williams, a single mother of five, is among those already assisted by “Delaware Does More” through the Kingswood Community Center.

    “When I had my disconnect notice for the electric, I was able to reach out to Kingswood,” Williams said. “They helped me with the food to feed my family and when my rent was late.  They gave us what we needed to get through and we did.”

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