The Community Food Bank of New Jersey wants your turkey.
Whether you've earned a free turkey at the supermarket, are eating at a relative's house, or simply want to do a good deed - the food bank, which feeds thousands of New Jersey residents a year, is willing to take your frozen Thanksgiving bird off your hands.
On Saturday, Nov. 19 between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m., there are drop off stations scheduled around Essex County, where volunteers will take your frozen turkeys, non-perishable canned and boxed food.
The turkeys and other donations will help the FoodBank to provide a traditional Thanksgiving dinner and other holiday meals to those in need, and to be there for those in need after the holidays.
“Our partner agencies have reported a rise in need of 40 percent in the past year. When you combine that recent rise in our poverty statistics, the situation is dire,” says Kathleen DiChiara, President and CEO of the Community FoodBank of New Jersey. “We rely on these turkey drives to help combat the problem and provide a Thanksgiving meal for those in need.”
In total there are close to 40 sites taking part in the 2011 Turkey Drives across Northern and Central New Jersey. A complete list of sites is available online: www.njfoodbank.org/turkeydrive.
New York Giants Wide Receiver Hakeem Nicks will help unload 1,500 turkeys that Stop & Shop is donating to the Hillside based food bank on Tuesday, Nov. 15.
Nicks, who grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina says he and his family occasionally benefited from meals provided by food banks and food pantries while he was growing up. Nicks is a graduate of Independence High School in Charlotte, where 39% of the students qualify for free federal lunch, twice the North Carolina state average.
The turkey drop off locations are:
First Congregational Church of Montclair – 40 South Fullerton, Montclair
First Presbyterian Church at Caldwell – 326 Bloomfield Ave., Caldwell
West Caldwell Presbyterian Church – 31 Fairfield Ave., West Caldwell
Glen Ridge Railroad Station – Ridgewood Ave. & Darwin Pl., Glen Ridge
Kings Supermarket of Short Hills – 778 Morris Turnpike, Short Hills
St. Philomena Church – 396 So. Livingston Ave., Livingston
St. Joseph’s Church – 44 Benvenue Ave., West Orange
St. Mary’s – 17 Monsignor Owens Place, Nutley
The FoodBank also welcomes financial donations, which will be used to purchase turkeys at wholesale prices and assist in distributing food and groceries throughout the winter months when the number of families needing help increases greatly. Donations can be made online at www.njfoodbank.org/turkeydrive.
The Community FoodBank of New Jersey, a member of Feeding America, distributed 39 million pounds of food in the last year to help feed 900,000 people in need in 18 of New Jersey’s 21 counties. Its staff and volunteers fight hunger and poverty not only through the distribution of food and grocery products, but by education and training, and by creating new programs to meet the needs of low-income people. The Community FoodBank of New Jersey recently earned Charity Navigator’s highest honor for the third consecutive year, a four-star rating.