Get in the giving spirit during the holidays

December 7, 2020  //  FOUND IN: Updates & Resources,

As the holidays get closer, many across the organization have asked how they can help and give back in this season of giving. There are ample opportunities for Michigan Medicine faculty and staff to get into the holiday spirit and support each other and our surrounding community. 

While some involve monetary donations, many others involve only your time, support or creativity.

Here’s a closer look at a number of ways you can help those in need during this season of giving:

  • Support Michigan Medicine COVID-19 philanthropic efforts: Michigan Medicine has several philanthropic funds established to support employees, learners, patients and research during COVID-19 and this challenging year. Consider making a monetary donation to one of these four important funds: COVID-19 Philanthropic Funds, Student Emergency Aid Funds and the COVID-19 Research Fund. Information about each fund, and how to donate is available on the Michigan Medicine Development website.
  • Play a role in the U-M United Way campaign: The U-M United Way campaign takes place each fall and brings together the faculty, staff and retirees of the university to support the community with programs and services that are making a difference. This year, the campaign has announced its fundraising goal of $1 million. Click here to learn more about the United Way campaign and how you can be certain your donation will address the community need most important to you! A new ePledge system in Wolverine Access will make donating faster and easier, or a pledge form is available at Pledges are due by Dec. 31, 2020.
  • Food donations: Michigan Medicine will host a third Food Gatherers collection in the month of December. Demand for food aid continues to rise in the area, and access to healthy options is a key factor in overall health and well-being. Watch for an announcement later this week about how to give online or in person from Dec. 14 through Dec. 22, and help make the season brighter for people in need. Non-perishable food can also be donated directly to Maggie’s Marketplace and the Maize & Blue Cupboard, and prepared meals may be donated to Ronald McDonald House, Alpha House Family Shelter, Domestic Violence Safe House Center and Salvation Army Family Shelter. Please contact these organizations directly for more information. Many also accept monetary donations.
  • Donate blood: Help hospitals facing blood shortages by participating in an upcoming drive in your area. Special precautions are in place to protect blood donors from the coronavirus. Additionally, people who have recovered from a confirmed case of COVID-19 can give blood plasma that could be used in studies to see if it can help severely ill COVID-19 patients.
  • Share cheer with homebound older adults: The Meals on Wheels services that feed older adults in Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti have links to Michigan Medicine, and both programs are collecting cards and drawings to be delivered with meals; they will be held for a time before delivery, in accordance with infection prevention guidance. Send them to Ann Arbor Meals on Wheels, 2025 Traverwood Drive, Suite F, Ann Arbor, MI 48105-2228.
  • Preparing and delivering meals: Food Gatherers — a nonprofit organization based in Ann Arbor that works to alleviate hunger — is always looking for volunteers to deliver meals or to assist in its warehouse. Please click here to learn how to sign up to help around the holidays, including a chance to deliver meals to those in the community. The Senior Alliance — which provides resources for older adults in Wayne, Michigan — is also seeking volunteers to help prepare and deliver meals for Christmas. If you are interested in becoming a Holiday Meals volunteer, please contact Lauren Wonsowski at or 734-727-2073.

Receiving support

It is also important to note resources are available to those seeking help during the holiday season.

The Emergency Hardship Program is available to support faculty and staff members who may be experiencing emergency financial situations. The program can offer resource recommendations and, in specific emergency cases, provide funds for expenses such as rent and utilities.

To receive assistance from any of the above mentioned organizations, please reach out to them directly.

As 2020 draws to a close, thank you for all that you do both at Michigan Medicine and in the community!