United Way and others earn recognition for Patrick Cudahy fire relief

United Way of Greater Milwaukee and its community partners were recently honored with the 2010 Community Services Project Award for the collaborative emergency food pantry organized for Patrick Cudahy employees after a devastating fire last summer. The award was presented by the Wisconsin AFL-CIO. The award’s recipients included UFCW Local 1473, Voces de la Frontera, IAM Local 66, Milwaukee County Labor Council, United Way of Greater Milwaukee and Hunger Task Force.

The Patrick Cudahy plant suffered an estimated $50 million in damages following a fire caused by a flare on July 5, leaving a number of employees in financial difficulty. After an emergency community meeting, a food pantry was organized to help out the thousands of people in need.

United Way awarded a $25,000 grant to go directly to Hunger Task Force to purchase and supply food for the affected workers. During July and August, the UFCW Local 1473 hosted the pantry at their offices two days a week, feeding more than 9,600 people – about half of them were children.

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