WOONSOCKET – The Milk Fund Appeal just brought in a big chunk of new change – $6,149 – a record for the Paper Bottle division of the annual drive.
The funds were raised through the sale of milk-bottle-shaped paper cutouts that participating vendors – 16 in all – sold through the holiday season, according to William Schneck, who co-chairs the effort with Gary Lapierre.
No store brought in more than Li’l General on Winter Street, said Schneck, who credited the promotional efforts of the owners with bringing in the dough – $1,710 at that location.
“For the paper bottles, it was a very good year,” said Schneck. “Probably one of the top years ever. Like I say, Li’l General over on Winter Street, no one’s ever done that before. They’ve got newer owners. They really got into it and pushed it. It makes a difference.”
The Milk Fund gives a special pat on the back to the top five bottle fundraisers. While the Winter Street Li’l General takes the top spot, the runner-ups, in order, were Chan’s Fine Oriental Dining, with $825; Li’l General on Front Street, $585; a tie for fourth place with Belhumeur-Duhamel American Legion Post 62 and Am-Vets Post 7 both bringing in $500; and Li’l General on Great Road, North Smithfield, $427.
The other contenders were Li’l General, Cumberland Hill Road, $318; Li’l General, Harrisville, $305; The Broaster House, $253; TYRA Club, $153; George’s Breakfast and Lunch, $110; Cercle Laurier, $108; Club Lafayette, $100; Fairmount American Legion Post 85; $100; Li’l General, Bellingham, $100; Li’l General, Manville Road, $55.
With pledges still rolling in, the 84th annual Milk Fund Appeal brought in an an unofficial $37,417, not including the returns from the paper bottle drive, just before the end of December. Dave Richards, president of Milk Fund Inc., said Lisa Carcifero, chairperson of the Milk Fund, has not yet released an official accounting of the proceeds for this season, but she is expected to do so in a week or so.
Nevertheless, Richards said it’s apparent the latest installment of the Milk Fund brought in substantially more than 2017, which generated about $42,000. In addition to the proceeds from the bottle drive, Richards said the appeal drew several other substantial contributions that have not been publicly acknowledged yet.
Founded in 1932, in the midst of the Great Depression, the Milk Fund Appeal was the brainchild of The Woonsocket Call and Community Care Alliance – then known as the Woonsocket Child and Family Service. The chief aim of the Milk Fund is to supply needy families and senior citizens with a household staple – milk – throughout the year by providing them with vouchers redeemable at Li’l General Stores.