Mercury Marine employees donated approximately 3,000 food items and US $7,500 to the Fondy Food Pantry during the fourth annual Fill the Boat to Cast Out Hunger food drive. Donations came from employees in all Mercury Marine facilities in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin over a four-day period in mid June.
The Fondy Food Pantry has been providing essential food assistance to thousands of individuals and families in need in the Fond du Lac area since 1973.
Travis Drehmel, a Mercury employee in Fond du Lac, led the food drive for the second consecutive year. "It's motivating to see the level of employee enthusiasm for this charitable event,' says Drehmel, "especially considering the scale of the event in its compressed time frame. Not only does the volunteer effort make the Fill the Boat to Cast Out Hunger food drive a success, the donations we provide each year make me especially proud to be part of it. It's a great cause for a great organization.'
The Fill the Boat drive goes a long way in helping people in the Fond du Lac community, says Sarah Zimmerman, President of the Fondy Food Pantry board of directors and a Mercury employee. “The pantry has two main programs; one that supports families through food boxes, and Food For Thought, which next school year will provide 600 of the neediest elementary school children with weekend meals,' she explains. "Those two programs would simply not be possible without the continued support of the community, such as the support provided by employees at Mercury.”
In addition to the non-perishable food and cash donation provided to the Fondy Food Pantry, a cooked-food donation of brats, hamburgers and grilled chicken was provided to the Broken Bread organization, which feeds the hungry in Fond du Lac each Friday.
"Since I started volunteering for this event,' said Drehmel, "I've learned that Broken Bread provides a hot meal to families. The food provided to those families surely gives them one less thing to worry about for the week, and it's great to be a small part of the supply to the help that is needed in this community.'