CARES opens market to stretch Bridge card dollars

A new market that helps families get the most from their Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) dollars opened Monday in Farmington Hills.

Busch’s CARES Market is located inside CARES of Farmington Hills. The nonprofit on Shiawassee also operates a food pantry for families in need, and the projects work hand in hand.

Busch's CARES Market manager
Market manager Sharon Brandal and her son, Peter, 12, run a few groceries through the checkout lane.

Manager Sharon Brandal said all proceeds from the market will fund the pantry, and items that aren’t quickly moving off the store shelves will be donated.

“Everything is geared toward helping on the food pantry side,” she said. “It’s all helping people.”

Busch's CARES Market
Busch’s CARES Market has plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables ready for Bridge card shoppers.

Brandal, who has 20 years of grocery store experience, needs volunteers to help run the market. Activities will include cashiering, stocking, greeting people at the door, and helping customers get their groceries to their cars.

Busch's CARES Market sign
This sign, hand-lettered by volunteer Elaine Grohman, welcomes shoppers to the market.

“We’re especially looking to fill afternoon and evening hours, and Saturdays,” she said.

Doug Busch, owner of Busch’s Fresh Food Market, said yes when CARES Director Todd Lipa approached him with the idea of creating the special market.

“That’s one thing I do know,” Busch said with a smile.

He found shelving for the small store and made connections with food vendors. Everything sold in the store is Bridge card-eligible, from dairy products and canned goods to fresh fruits and vegetables.

Busch said he only deals now with community projects, which are a hallmark of the Ann Arbor-based company. Stores, including one in Farmington Hills, host fundraisers at their cash registers and four food drives throughout the year. They also help Scout troops and school groups with fundraisers.

Busch's CARES Market

“Giving back to the community is one of the things that makes us different,” he said.

For now, Busch’s CARES Market is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday – Friday, at 27835 Shiawassee Road. As more volunteers come on board, Brandal hopes to expand hours.

To learn more about CARES of Farmington Hills and the Busch’s CARES Market, visit caresfh.org or follow CARES on Facebook.

To volunteer for the Busch’s CARES Market, contact Brandal at sbrandal@caresfh.org.

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