The need continues for food donations this season
An unprecedented number of families are in need of turkeys this holiday season, according to Carlos Rodriguez, executive director for the FoodBank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties in Neptune.
Roughly 14,000 turkeys are needed, but other food items are in short supply as well.
"Normally it's in November when we distribute enough food for over one-million meals, and I can tell you that we've actually provided that much food in September and October already. So, what we're seeing here in November is really an unprecedented need of food," said Rodriguez.
The FoodBank is scrambling to get just enough frozen birds with all the trimmings as they can distribute. A "Turkey March" is underway with a number of drives being held throughout the week at various drop-off locations.
"I think we're at 12,000 (turkeys), but we'd love to be able to have 14,000 turkeys to give out to families in need," Rodriguez said.
One out of 10 people living in Monmouth and Ocean Counties receive emergency food and other services from The FoodBank. In 2013, The FoodBank served more than 131,000 people - 41 percent of that total included children and the elderly.
On Thursday, representatives from Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch and Community Medical Center in Toms River will help unload 1,500 turkeys donated by Stop & Shop.
Anyone wishing to donate a frozen turkey (12-18 lbs) can drop it off at the FoodBank, 3300 Route 66, Neptune, on weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Saturday, Nov. 22, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. WindMill Restaurants at the following locations also are accepting frozen turkeys.
- Belmar - Route 71 & River Road
- Brick - 856 Route 70
- Freehold - 3339 Route 9
- Ocean Grove - 18 South Main St.
- North Long Branch - 200 Ocean Ave.
Additional drop-off locations for non-perishable food items can be found at www.foodbankmoc.org or by calling 732-918-2600.