Additionally, the nonprofit is working with Focus: Hope to deliver food to seniors, coordinating with United Way for Southeastern Michigan to provide gap food delivery and is in discussions with the YMCA of Metropolitan Detroit to partner more formally on food distribution.
“The goal is, as long as we can do it and people are safe and healthy, to maintain it as long as this shutdown is in place,” Hauser said.
Adapting its operations to the crisis has been costly. The ramped-up services are eating into the nonprofit’s $2.3 million yearly budget at a time of great need and uncertainty in the philanthropic community.
Downtown Boxing Gym has secured thousands of dollars in supplemental donations to help fund the program. It has also received food donations, and purchased food at discounted prices, from places such as Supino Pizzeria, Standby and Forgotten Harvest. Kroger and Meijer have offered gift cards for groceries as well.
After feeding those in need, the nonprofit’s priority will return to growing the program to 250 kids by the end of the year. With 1,300 kids on the waiting list, the demand is certainly there. However, with foundations being flooded with requests because of the pandemic and resources stretched thin, the dollars may not be.
“Our fear is that this recession will actually create a dynamic where we’re not able to offer the same quality of support that we’ve been able to offer all these years, which is what parents really depend on,” Hauser said.
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