Thanksgiving turkeys to be given by area food banks

Thanksgiving is less than a week away and some help has arrived for some people who may not be as fortunate this holiday. More than 12,000 turkeys will be given out by two area food banks this weekend.

To many, Thanksgiving is a day off or a time to spend with family, but many others can’t concentrate on that because they’re worried about feeding their families.

“Times are tough right now,” says Cherez Robinson, a volunteer. “There’s a recession going on and people are having hard times.”

Thousands of turkeys with all the fixings are being offered at a discounted rate for people who can’t afford their Thanksgiving dinners. Catholic Charities and the SHARE Food Network are holding the annual event in Hyattsville. Many local churches stopped by for their members who are in need.

“I definitely feel good about it,” says Philander Williams of the New Bethel Baptist Church. “I’ve been doing it for 30 to 35 years.”

It’s tough and sometimes embarrassing for people to ask for help, but because of the economy, people say, they had no choice. Some are buying supplies to make baskets for families.

“It’s pretty tight,” says Shawn Jones, another volunteer. “It’s very tight for people. It’s rough out here.”

The Capital Area Food Bank in Northeast D.C. also stocked up on turkey. One-thousand birds were delivered from Giant Friday. They’ll be used at area soup kitchens and food pantries.{ }

The SHARE Food Network is shooting to distribute 11,000 affordable turkey dinners, costing between $28 and $38, from Saturday to Tuesday. Distribution will take place starting at 10 a.m. Saturday at their warehouse at 5170 Lawrence Place in Hyattsville.

Discounted meal packages for Thanksgiving include a turkey and a plethora of sides, including sweet potatoes, macaroni & cheese, green beans and stuffing.