For the 13th consecutive year, members of the Skidmore College community are joining together through the Skidmore Cares community service program.
Through the program, the Skidmore community has donated more than $90,000 in monetary gifts and more than 28,000 items to nonprofit agencies throughout Saratoga County.
The program was founded in 2006 by Skidmore President Philip A. Glotzbach and his wife, Marie Glotzbach, in an effort to bring staff and families together in a meaningful way during the holiday season. They reached out to the Skidmore community to raise donations of food, provisions and school supplies to assist those in need in Saratoga County.
Nearly 150 Skidmore faculty and staff members, along with representatives from 10 Saratoga-based community service agencies, attended an energetic kickoff luncheon on campus. This year, contributions will benefit Shelters of Saratoga, Franklin Community Center, Mary’s Haven, Wellspring, Corinth Central School District, The Latino Advocacy Program, Salvation Army, Saratoga Center for the Family, Saratoga County Economic Opportunity Council and Saratoga Springs City School District PATHS.
Contributions are collected in a Skidmore Cares sleigh located on the front lawn of the North Broadway home and sorted for distribution. Skidmore’s scholar athletes and members of facility services deliver the donations to 10 local organizations in December.
“You see these shelters that may be completely bare bones,” said Megan Buchanan, associate athletic director at Skidmore College. “You feel that moment that you’ve made a difference.”
There is an acute need in Saratoga Springs and in surrounding areas. In Saratoga County, 7 percent of households fall under federal poverty guidelines. An additional 21 percent are considered “struggling” according to the United Way.
Kari Cushing, executive director of Franklin Community Center, said “It’s a constant struggle to keep up with the demand. In December, we know that Skidmore Cares is coming with a large food donation and we rely on it.”
Michelle Hubbs, director of community service at Skidmore College, said even small donations can mean a meal for someone in need.
“Bringing in your can of soup is going to feed a 5-year-old, is going to feed a 75-year-old, is going to help the man who lost his job— for no fault of his own—and needs to put food on the table,” Hubbs said. “It is needed.”