Heading into 2024 with MUM

Frozen Star Berries

From the Director’s Corner

Happy New Year! As we begin 2024, I want to tell you how much we appreciate your support of MUM – which is vital to our work in the community! I particularly want to thank all those who gave so generously through several food drives and fundraisers, including Friendsgiving, Giving Tuesday, and our year-end fundraiser. Thanks to your generosity, we were able to access MUM’s Board and staff match of $15,000! Please see below for more details on the amounts raised from our fundraisers at the end of 2023, as well as the impact MUM has had in our community in the last 6 months.

On January 15, we celebrated Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a day set aside for service and learning in honor of Dr. King and the continued fight for social justice and equality for marginalized communities. While we did not offer volunteer opportunities that day, MUM could not meet the needs of our neighbors without the many volunteers who give their time to MUM every week. We appreciate their commitment to helping those who are living in poverty and to addressing the underlying causes of inequality and social injustice, as Dr. King called us to do.

As we’ve shared before, we continue to see record numbers of neighbors applying for emergency financial assistance and seeking food at our office and mobile food pantries. There is real need in our community, and as we move into the cold winter months, many of our neighbors continue to struggle to make ends meet. Your support is vital to helping MUM meet their needs and refer them to other services and benefits. 

Most of us take for granted our access to healthy food through well-stocked grocery chains, farmers’ markets, local restaurants, and other suppliers. But many – across the country and right here in Montgomery County – currently live with some form of food insecurity, meaning that they do not have consistent and reliable access to adequate nutritious food to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

As we face the inevitability of the cold weather that the winter months bring, most of us take for granted our access to appropriate clothing, and to housing and heating to keep us safe and warm. But some of our neighbors face a lack of affordable housing and the inability to keep up with rising utility costs.

As we face the second half of our fiscal year, we are also grateful for continued funding from the Montgomery County government to the Capital Area Food Bank (CAFB), which provides for purchases of non-perishable food, as well as produce boxes that allow our clients access to consistent supplies of fresh fruits and vegetables. MUM is also pleased to announce that we have just been awarded a $20,000 capacity building grant from CAFB. The purpose of this grant is to support the recent addition of a bi-lingual program manager position at MUM which helps us deliver services to our clients in a culturally sensitive way and eliminate any communication barriers to receiving food or financial assistance. MUM sincerely appreciates CAFB’s ongoing partnership to address food insecurity as well as other challenges that our clients face.

Thanks for your support of MUM! We look forward to a new year of working with your support to provide for our neighbors! We make it easy! Donate here.

Dayna Brown, Executive Director

MUM’s Impact in the Community

With your support, MUM is able to help some of our neighbors who are continuing to struggle and are living below the poverty line. In the first 6 months of our fiscal year – which is July 1 through June 30 – MUM has had the following impacts:

  • Mobile Food Pantry – Since July 1, we have served 1,692 households and we broke another record serving 307 households on December 3rd at the Aspen Hill Mobile Food Pantry. We have distributed more than 73,000 pounds of food, more than half of which was produce. This is a big step forward in our goal to distribute more fresh, nutritious food!
  • Office Food Pantry – Since Jully 1, we have had 918 client visits, including a record of 181 in November, and distributed over 34,600 pounds of food, half of which was healthy produce.
  • Eviction Prevention Program – Between July 1 and the end of December, MUM helped 13 households stay in their homes, providing $5,768.47 of assistance to neighbors facing evictions.
  • Utilities Cutoff Prevention and Restoration Program – Since July 1, MUM spent $22,250.29 to assist 30 households whose electricity, gas and water were going to be turned off.
  • Emergency Prescription Drug Program – Since July 1, MUM assisted 6 clients and spent $1,422 ensuring that needed prescription drugs were available.

Special Thanks! 

Thanks to the many individuals, businesses, organizations, and faith communities who donated food and funds to MUM in the final months of 2023! We are honored to have received over $4,000 in donations made in memory of Joe Begg, who passed away in October. Joe served for many years on the MUM board, helped with Stamp Out Hunger, and before the pandemic he showed up every week to help with the Saturday morning food pantry. Joe was a very kind and generous person, and we appreciate his final gift to MUM through these memorial gifts.

Here is a summary of the wonderful contributions made to MUM from some recent events and fundraising campaigns:

  • HalloWheaton – $485
  • Haunted Trail on Old Scream Road – $1,046 and 340 pounds of food
  • Fundraiser at Babycat Brewery – $602
  • Stuff the Truck at the Kensington Park Senior Living Friendsgiving – $1,345 and 500 pounds of food
  • Scuba Santa fundraiser from the Olney Scuba Adventure Dive Club – $5,000
  • Greg Gannon Food Drive – over 600 pounds of food
  • Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church – over 330 pounds of food and diapers
  • Reverse Advent Calendar from Christ Congregational Church – over 1,000 pounds of food, diapers, and feminine hygiene products
  • Year-end fundraising drive – over $15,000 has been raised and more donations continue to come in!

THANK YOU for this vital support to our mission!

Giving to MUM is easy!

Here’s how to make a financial donation. | Here’s how you can help by volunteering.

MUM Office Hours

MUM’s office is open Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 9am to 4pm. Beginning this month – January – the office food pantry will only be open on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10am to 12pm and 1pm to 3pm. Appointments preferred, walk-ins accepted. All staff and visitors are still asked to wear masks in the MUM office.

Clients needing food assistance on Tuesdays please visit:
Hughes United Methodist Church/Mid-County Consolidation Hub
10700 Georgia Ave.
Silver Spring, MD 20902
301-949-8383. Se habla Español.
Open every Tuesday from 9:30am to 12:30pm.
Face masks are MANDATORY. Bring ID and grocery bags.

Appointments to apply for financial assistance for eviction prevention, utility shut-off prevention, and emergency prescription drugs can be made by contacting the MUM office by telephone at 301-929-8675 or by email at office@mumhelp.org.