Cynthia Milk Fund

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On a winter day in 1914 a telephone call came in to the Memphis Press. The caller was concerned about the faint wailing of a baby he heard coming from a seemingly deserted house in downtown Memphis. The city editor sent Memory McCord, one of Memphis' earliest women reporters, to investigate. When she arrived at the building, a woman, holding a tiny baby, opened the door of the one-room apartment. The mother was frightened and cold. The poorly clad baby was hungry. There was no wood for the apartment's stove and the icebox lacked food and milk. 

McCord, who wrote under the byline of Cynthia Grey, wrote a touching story the next day. Soon the newspaper office was flooded with contributions and offers of housing and food for the mother and child. As a result, a fund was created to help needy infants and babies get a healthy start in life. Incorporated in 1933, the fund later became a tax-exempt organization. 

When the Memphis Press-Scimitar closed in 1983, The Commercial Appeal began sponsoring the program. And in 1984, the fund expanded its role to meet the needs of children who are at risk nutritionally because of specific medical problems. At this time, Le Bonheur Children's Medical Center became closely involved with the fund and in 1995, the Cynthia Milk Fund Nutrition Learning Center opened within the hospital.

Today, the fund exists to meet the needs of children who are at risk nutritionally because of specific medical problems. The Cynthia Milk Fund also provides nutritional services for medically and nutritionally fragile senior citizens in the Mid-South. The fund is essential in helping to sustain life among the youngest and the oldest; every month over 200 children and adults benefit from the support it provides.

For more information about the Cynthia Milk Fund and the services it provides, please contact Le Bonheur Children’s at (901) 287-5152 or the Memphis and Shelby County Health Department at (901) 545-8909.

The Cynthia Milk fund is one of the city's oldest charities, stewarded by a joint partnership of The Commercial Appeal, Le Bonheur Children's Medical Center and the Memphis and Shelby County Health Department. The fund relies on the support of a generous community. If you are interested in contributing to the Cynthia Milk Fund please contact the Foundation office at (901) 287-6308.