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The Pope Francis Center serves homeless guests in Detroit 300 days each year.
“UAW-Ford and UAW-GM are investing not just in the lives and health of our guests but in the betterment of our community."
~Fr. Tim McCabe, SJ
Pope Francis Center Launches Nutritious Food Program with UAW-Ford and UAW-GM Grant

The Pope Francis Center  a homeless service center in the heart of Detroit  is thrilled to announce the launch of its Nutritious Food Program this holiday season. The program is made possible by combined gifts of $320,000 from UAW-Ford and UAW-GM.

The Nutritious Food Program will provide 20,000 healthy meals per year to the city’s homeless, including holiday meals on Thanksgiving and Christmas. Thanks to the generosity of UAW-Ford and UAW-GM, the first two years of the program are fully funded.

“The most accessible foods for the homeless come from shelters, soup kitchens, fast food restaurants, or dumpsters  all of which can be high in salt, fat, preservatives, and empty calories," explained Jesuit Fr. Tim McCabe, executive director of the Pope Francis Center. "This type of diet can exacerbate serious health problems and increase aggression.”

On Thanksgiving morning, roughly 150 guests were treated to scrambled eggs with onions, spinach, and a variety of colored peppers; turkey sausage; oatmeal with cinnamon and fresh berries; whole grain bagels; bananas; coffee; milk; and juice.


“Through serving tens of thousands of healthy meals to the homeless, the Pope Francis Center gives those in need the dignity and healthy nutrition that all of God’s children deserve,” said Cindy Estrada, vice president of UAW-GM.


Jimmy Settles, vice president of UAW-Ford, added, “We cannot disregard the plight of others in our communities; instead, we must each find ways to help those who are most disadvantaged among us.”


In an effort to support local business, ingredients for the Nutritious Food Program will be purchased from Detroit vendors like Eastern Market whenever possible.


“UAW-Ford and UAW-GM are investing not just in the lives and health of our guests but in the betterment of our community," said Fr. McCabe. "The trickle-down effect will be far-reaching.”


For additional information or to cover this story, please contact:

Meghan Brennan

Mgr. Marketing, Media & Special Events | The Pope Francis Center

Meghan@PopeFrancisCenter.org | 313.899.8037




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