In April, DTE volunteers spent their Friday morning at Forgotten Harvest’s Oak Park facility in Oakland County, organizing and packing food for community members.

Forgotten Harvest is a Michigan-based nonprofit dedicated to relieving hunger and preventing nutritional food waste. Through that mission, grocery stores and supermarkets give unused food to the nonprofit, where volunteers will then sort, pack and ready items to be shipped to local food pantries.

“I feel that doing a group volunteer activity like this, we’re really giving back to the community,” said Paul Thomas, Electric Marketing senior strategist at DTE. “Individuals who may use Forgotten Harvest’s services can be our customers, so it’s one more way we can help those we serve.”  

In one day, 11,000 pounds of food can be processed through Forgotten Harvest’s Oak Park packing facility, which is why volunteers are so vital to their work.

DTE Energy and the DTE Foundation have been supporting Forgotten Harvest for nearly 25 years. Most recently, the DTE Foundation provided a $3 million grant to United Way for Southeastern Michigan and partner agencies, including Forgotten Harvest, to help feed residents in Southeastern Michigan. 

“Our partnership with DTE and the DTE Foundation is really important, so we can take care of our neighbors in need,” said Tim Hudson, chief development officer at Forgotten Harvest. “We’ve been working together for over 20 years on community engagement projects, food pantry sponsorships and volunteer activations with employees, having hundreds of DTE volunteers dedicated their time each year.”

Through the grant, Forgotten Harvest will have the means to establish new pop-up food pantries in communities where it’s most critical.

To learn more about Forgotten Harvest and its work, visit the link here.