Smucker’s focuses on philanthropy in times of need

BY HAYLEE JOY

The J.M. Smucker Company has been providing help towards businesses that are in great need of it. They have announced that they have made donations to the Akron-Canton Food Bank, Feeding America, United Way and other charities.

Feeding America is one of the companies that Smucker’s has given essential aid to. Between American Red Cross, United Way, and Feeding America, they have donated $300,000 to those in need. Along with the regular support, Smucker’s also increased their food donations towards their partners donating over 225,000 units of Jif, Sahale, and TruRoots products.

Tessy Orbea, a programs specialist at Feeding America, said it is times like this where Smucker’s is a  huge help. 

“During this pandemic specifically, the need is higher than ever, and we greatly rely on corporations like Smucker’s to help us make as big an impact as possible.” said Orbea. 

Carrie Foy, a board member of United Way in the Orrville area, shared a little bit about how Smucker’s has also donated to them during this time. She said that in response to COVID-19, they made large financial donations, some of them to the Summit County location, and some to the Orrville location. 

Once the funds were donated, they were quickly distributed to those who needed it most including The Viola Startzman Clinic, where the staffing needs to provide medical assistance to their patients; the Counseling Center for tele-mental health; The Orrville Salvation Army, which helped with financial and food insecurities; The Orrville Boys & Girls club for supplying food to children and families; and the Orrville Utilities Department, to ensure that customers will not experience disconnection of services or late fees during this stressful time. 

“The United Way is incredibly grateful for the generosity that the J.M. Smucker Company has shown as we navigate through the COVID-19 crisis. Their quick response and donation has enabled us to get funds to those who are most in need during this unprecedented time,” Foy said. 

Smucker’s is no stranger to donating and generosity: in 2019, Smucker’s sent 175 volunteers to the Akron-Canton Foodbank, spending over 481 hours in total helping the program, and donated more than $2.7 million and 12 million pounds of food in lifetime giving. Cody Stanley, programs- coordinator at Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank, shared a bit about how Smucker’s has helped them. 

Smucker’s employees volunteer their time at the Akron-Canton Food Bank before the volunteer program was put on hold. Their long standing relationship with this charity continues through hard times. PHOTO COURTESY OF RACHEL SWEET

“One of my favorite parts about our relationship with the J.M. Smucker Company is that we can keep the essentials, like peanut butter and jelly, always stocked at our food pantry at the I PROMISE School,” Stanley said. “Those essential food items make a huge difference to many families that are struggling to make ends meet.”

Smucker’s not only donated their time, they also donated food and money to help provide for the families right now. The Company made four truckloads of portion control PB&J, which in total is over 2.5 million individual servings; and have made special donations from their portfolio of brands to the Food Bank. 

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