The Salvation Army and WJR Team Up to Host 31st Annual Bed & Bread Club Radiothon Presented by Ford Motor Company Fund

16-hour Radiothon will air on Feb. 23 on News/Talk 760 WJR from Emagine Theatre in Novi

SOUTHFIELD, Mich., (Jan. 30, 2018)

The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit will host its 31 st Annual Bed & Bread Club Radiothon, presented by Ford Motor Company Fund, from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 23. The fundraiser will be broadcast live on News/Talk 760 WJR from the Emagine Theatre in Novi.

Throughout the 16-hour broadcast, WJR hosts Paul W. Smith, Frank Beckmann, Guy Gordon and Mitch Albom will speak to local and national celebrities and musicians, and civic and business leaders sharing their support for The Salvation Army. Jim Vella, president of Ford Motor Company Fund, will share Radiothon hours with Guy Gordon beginning at 2 p.m. Dick Purtan, Bed & Bread Club chairman and retired Detroit radio Hall of Famer will once again lead the broadcast from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., joined by daughters Jackie Purtan, WXYZ’s JoAnne Purtan and Purtan’s People alumni.

“Through 31 years – and counting – we are truly grateful for all of the work our partners put in to make this a reality,” said Major Russ Sjögren, general secretary and metro Detroit area commander for The Salvation Army Eastern Michigan Division. “We’re so thankful for the generous support of the Ford Motor Company Fund, WJR, Emagine Theatres and the thousands of people who donate to us. Only by their gracious contributions can we continue to provide Bed & Bread support to those in need across Detroit and the surrounding communities.”

The Salvation Army’s Bed & Bread program feeds and shelters metro Detroiters every single day of the year. A donation of $120 helps feed five people for nearly a month. Those doubling their generosity to $240 will help feed 10 people and receive a special incentive gift for supporting The Salvation Army’s Bed & Bread program.

Supporters can donate now through the end of the 16-hour Radiothon by:
  • Texting BREAD to 91999
  • Visiting or
  • Calling 248-528- 0760
  • Sending a check or money order, made payable to The Salvation Army’s Bed & Bread Club, to 16130 Northland Drive, Southfield, MI 48075

  Ford Motor Company Fund, the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company, has provided five vehicles in recent years to The Salvation Army Eastern Michigan Division to support the Bread & Bread program, as well as Emergency Disaster Services. The Ford Motor Company Fund is returning as the Bed & Bread Club Radiothon presenting sponsor for a second year to help ensure The Salvation Army can meet the needs of those it serves across the region.

"Ford Fund is dedicated to improving people’s lives and advancing social mobility, and one of the most important ways we do that is by providing access to basic needs,” said Vella, who is also a member of The Salvation Army National Advisory Board. “Let’s not forget the powerful impact a meal can have on someone who is hungry.”

The annual fundraiser is the primary source of funding for the nonprofit’s Bed & Bread program and is the largest single-market, single day radio fundraiser in the country. Since 1988, the Bed & Bread Club Radiothon has raised more than $33 million to help those in need.

“WJR is proud to host the 31 st annual Bed & Bread Club Radiothon once again. We understand how great the need is within our communities and encourage listeners to make an impact by donating to The Salvation Army,” said Tom O’Brien, general manager of News/Talk 760 WJR.

Last year, Bed & Bread program trucks travelled 170 miles to 62 stops each and every day of the year within the city of Detroit, totaling over 62,000 miles. Annually, the Bed & Bread program serves 18,720 gallons of soup; 93,600 loaves of bread; 130,000 pounds of deli meat; 182,000 hot dogs; and 520,000 pieces of fruit and snacks.