In collaboration with the Regional Food Bank of New York, Medline’s Montgomery facility hosted a food drive in January in remembrance of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his dedication to service.
In celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day this year, Medline Industries partnered with local food pantries from New York to California, and everywhere in between, to donate food to people in the communities where they work and serve. Medline employees at 26 sites across 22 states acted on Dr. King’s mission of service to create a meaningful impact in the community.
“Medline is focused on making healthcare run better, and we show those values in our community giving efforts by addressing the social determinants of health such as access to food and nutrition. Dr. King’s inspiration of service is driving our local team’s effort to partner with the Regional Food Bank of New York,” said Thomas Fallon, Senior Director of Operations in Montgomery.
During their food drive Medline Montgomery collected 418 pounds of food, which roughly equals 348 meals, according to Evan Allison, Medline Public Affairs Specialist.
“It was a wonderful endeavor. Medline is an amazing organization that is supportive of the Food Bank of the Hudson Valley,” said Sarah Dunn, Director of the Food Bank of Hudson Valley “Medline employees from Montgomery donated 418 pounds of food to us, which is amazing.”
The idea to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. through the act of service came from the 26 sites participating, working closely with Medline’s Black Employee Network.
“When Medline’s Black Employee Network was asked how they wanted to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., we wanted to take action,” said Carol Barnett, Co-chair of Medline’s Black Employee Network. “We were inspired by a quote that came from the Dr. himself. He said, ‘Everybody can be great — because anybody can serve,’ so we went with that.”
In preparation for the event, Medline took it on like a team project by breaking it down into small bites and being ready with their posters, team and food partnership. After the food is collected from Medline Industries, LP, and given to the Regional Food Bank of New York, it would be distributed to local food pantries in the Hudson Valley to be shared to families facing food insecurity.
“Plan, check, execute, is what we did,” said Barnett.
With the effort of the food drives, Medline aimed to create unity amongst their employees and sites showing that they can come together to do something good in the community and provide impact by making themselves known outside of the hospital setting and in the communities where they work and live.
“Medline is interested in paving a way for employees across the country to learn about Black history, culture and medical pioneers. We will be releasing a video on Feb. 1 honoring their stories and hosting a poster exhibit in partnership with different cultures to tell the history of allies to overcome injustice,” said Barnett.
The Food Bank of the Hudson Valley, a distribution location of the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York, is building a new 40,000 square foot distribution center in the Village of Montgomery. This new center would expand the organization’s ability to combat food insecurity and alleviate hunger in New York State while directly serving six Hudson Valley counties (Orange, Ulster, Dutchess, Rockland, Sullivan, and Putnam). The center would be located in close proximity to the Medline Industries, LP, distribution center in Montgomery. While the current facility located in Cornwall-on-Hudson has been providing food resources to thousands of families facing hunger, the need for a larger facility has become essential to deal with the growing demand and increase of food insecurity faced by the community. The capital campaign, named “Growing to Feed Our Community,” will provide increased capacity to obtain, sort, store and distribute food donations in the Hudson Valley.
“While it was our first collaboration with Medline in terms of doing a food drive, Medline has donated money to build our new center,” said Gunn.
Due to the inclement weather that occurred during the week of January 15-19, sites that participated in the event, located on the east coast, including Montgomery, extended their drives. While the food drive of some sites was extended until January 26, others were extended to the first week of February. Data from the success of the food drives should also be ready by the first week of February.
“People were just pleased to donate. In Jefferson, Indiana, we collected over 15,000 pounds of food,” said Barnett, “It’s really impressive what a group of employees can do given the chance, it just shows how we can come together and make an impact. Such a collaboration is worth continuing to pursue.”