Feed the Needy gives 300K pounds of food ahead of Thanksgiving

Published: Nov. 21, 2023 at 5:41 AM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Food giveaways continue across the Mid-South this week ahead of Thanksgiving.

Feed the Needy’s annual 29th Thanksgiving food giveaway started Tuesday morning.

Nearly 300,000 pounds of food were donated to 5,000 families across Arkansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee. All thanks to Feed the Needy.

“With inflation being the way it is, we suffered a really, really high cost. But we were blessed, through our sponsors, to make sure we had the funds,” said Ruth Rawlings-Banks, Feed the Needy Founder.

The non-profit donates two boxes to families each year with nonperishable and perishable Thanksgiving meal necessities. Year after year, making a larger impact.

“A lot of the families, when we go to the home. do not realize the magnitude of the food that’s in the boxes. And knowing that they are going to eat just one day,” said Rawlings.

Hundreds of volunteers made the initiative possible.

“It’s not just a turkey. It’s not just bread,” said Willie Dye MSCS Safety and Security.

Including staff from Memphis-Shelby County Schools, a school district with families receiving most of these boxes.

“I’ve delivered them before, and the little kid has held my leg and cried on me. The mother has cried. They actually need this,” said Willie.

Other volunteers say the service day out of the office, or off the streets of Memphis, is special to them.

“A lot of times we take for granted what we get every day somebody else, it’s difficult for them to get it and they really appreciate and need it. To provide the need is really rewarding,” said Maj. Sandra Green with Memphis Police Department.

Twenty-six local food pantries are also benefitting, helping to ensure the homeless population also gets a meal this Thursday.

This initiative is said to make Thanksgiving possible for hundreds of Memphis Shelby County Schools families.

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