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SKS Team Up with United Way and Feed the Children for People Gotta Eat

South Bend, IN - 7/21/09

The Street Kids Softball organization and their charitable division, Street Kids Care, spent the afternoon on Tuesday in South Bend handing out boxes of food to families in Michiana that were in need of feeding their families.

As part of United Way's "People Gotta Eat" campaign, several members of SKS braved the down pouring rain to make sure hundreds of families in Michiana had food on their tables tonight. And despite the rain, dozens of volunteers, including SKS, never stopped.

"We knew that rain doesn't stop hunger, so it can't stop us," said Courtney Jorgensen of Street Kids Care. "There were hundreds of needy families here today and we just wanted to do our part."

Players like Dan Garey, who have been a part of the SKS family for several years, agreed.

"Today is a perfect example of what our program is all about off the field," said the veteran infielder. "We know that by being out here today that we made a difference and that feels good knowing that."

The Street Kids Softball team from South Bend will travel to Indianapolis this weekend for the state championship tournament, but that was the furthest thing on their minds today.

"Today was about helping others," said TJ Jorgensen of SKS. "I am so proud that these guys came out here today to help make our program mean something. When you put others needs ahead of your own, thats amazing and these guys have done that all year."

What is People Gotta Eat?

In the fall of 2008, over thirty local food pantries and non-profit organizations came together through the leadership of the United Way of St. Joseph County to discuss rising food needs in the community. These organizations began the People Gotta Eat initiative as a collaborative effort to address these needs. The initiative specifically focuses upon increasing the supply of food in local pantries during the months of January-March when food levels typically bottom out after the holidays.

Rising Needs, Less Supply

It is a reported fact from local social service agencies that the demand for services and assistance for St. Joseph County residents is at an all-time high. This is due to a confluence of high gasoline prices, financial institution credit tightening, higher food prices, and increasing unemployment in the area. While many residents can bunk in with family and friends if they lose their housing, everyone has to eat. Local food pantries are reporting a shortage of funds to purchase food (and therefore a shortage of food) combined with a rapidly increasing demand by more families needing food. The increased need is now coming from recently unemployed families and seniors.

About Street Kids Care

The charitable division of one of the most popular softball teams in the sport has taken part in community efforts since 2006. Tuesday's event was the third time this year that the SK Care program has been involved with helping to feed the needy, as they took part in volunteering at the Faith Mission in Elkhart back in the winter and hosted a golf outing where they raised over 350 lbs of canned food for the Northern Indiana Food Bank.