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Republic Services Donates $1,200 To Help Impoverished Families
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
06:33PM / Wednesday, May 02, 2018
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Republic Services Driver Tom Lennon, Mayor Linda Tyer, BCAC Deputy Director Bryan House, Republic Services General Manager Deborah Bolesky, Republic Services Operations Supervisor John Griffin, and Republic Services Municipal Services Manager Dan Higgins.


Rev. Joel Huntington looks on as Republic Services and pantry staff wheel in a full U-boat of donations into the South Congregational Food Pantry.
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Republic Services donated $1,200 to organizations helping families in poverty on Wednesday.
 
The city's trash hauler delivered a $700 check for the Berkshire Community Action Council and $500 for the South Congregational Food Pantry.
 
Those donations were gifted just before the company's staff unloaded a u-boat worth of canned goods and pasta to restock the shelves at the pantry.
 
"We're in the city each day being a service provider and we feel it is important for us to support the communities that we serve. Our employees live here. Our employees work here every day. For us, it is very important to be an engaged employer in the city," Municipal Services Manager Dan Higgins said.
 
Bryan House, of BCAC, said there are plenty of programs the money can go toward. He cited it possibly helping the warm clothing program in the winter when the organization helps more than 2,000 dress for the cold weather. Or the holiday gift-giving program. The organization might even use it this summer to assist with the family fun day in which BCAC works with homeless shelters to give families a free day at a place like Bouquet and provide developmental activities.
 
"We're just thankful and delighted to be recognized as an agency doing this type of work. There are many of us out there. It takes many hands and we're just one of those hands trying to facilitate the great work that's happening in serving underresourced folks, serving our families and neighbors that are struggling with the impacts of poverty," House said. "We will definitely put this to good use."
 
Higgins said BCAC works with a number of service organizations in the county on programs to help combat poverty. Republic Services has donated to BCAC in the past and is confident that the money is going to good use.
 
"They step up and work with a lot of groups in the city supporting citizens who have needs and I think they'll have a big impact," Higgins said.
 
The money at the food pantry will help with its ongoing efforts. The Rev. Joel Huntington said some 500 families use the food pantry on a monthly basis.
 
"It is just amazing how much impact they have on the city and the area. They just support so many families in need," Higgins said.
 
During the Thanksgiving Angels program, which provides groceries for a full holiday meal, the church spends some $23,000 on turkeys for the thousands of people who use the program.
 

Republic Services also donated $500 to the food pantry.
"There is so much food insecurity in our city. It is amazing when they do the Thanksgiving Angels how many people are eligible for the program and how many people come through," Mayor Linda Tyer said.
 
That program does receive a significant amount of donations. But, Higgins said the pantry serves families in need all year round and continued support is needed.
 
"This is the time of the year they do need help and people don't necessarily think about it because the holidays are over," Higgins said.
 
Republic Services has made it a routine to contribute to organizations in the city. In the past donations had been made to the Boy Scouts, the Christian Center, the Crane Memorial Center, the Marilyn Hamilton Literacy Program, the Rites of Passage Empowerment Program, Youth Alive, the 4th of July Parade, the Farmer's Market and even to replace decorations on the city's Christmas tree.
 
"For Republic Services, this is another example of their commitment to the communities they work in. We know them mostly when we see them coming down our neighborhood streets and collecting our trash, being partners with us in a very important community service. But they also make contributions. They are good corporate friends and corporate sponsors," Tyer said.
 
"Everybody's operating on a shoestring so contributions like this do make a difference."
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