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Holiday food program in need of donations

Holiday food program in need of donations

Students from Turlock High School volunteered to sort cans for Turlock Together at Turlock Fruit on Thursday. The students were mostly from the Saved club and Ryan Tribble's psychology class. Seve...


POSTED December 11, 2009 10:59 p.m.
With less than a week left in their annual food and toy drive, Turlock Together organizers are making an urgent appeal for donations.
“Turlock Together is having a rough time this year,” Major Debi Shrum of the Turlock Salvation Army said. “We’re stretching to do 2,000 baskets of food this year. We’re living by faith.”
Turlock Together has been providing food baskets and toys for families in need in Turlock, Hilmar, Delhi, Keyes, Denair and Stevinson since 1995. Due to the recent economic depression, more families than ever are in need of help this holiday season while fewer donations have been made.
Organizers estimate that they are $20,000 short of donations of cash, toys and food necessary to provide holiday baskets to the 2,000 families registered for the program and others who are on a growing wait list.
Families on the Turlock Together list receive two boxes of food, one perishable and the other non-perishable. The non-perishable box contains flour, sugar, oil, peanut butter, corn, green beans, tomato sauce, canned fruit, tuna, spaghetti, rice, pinto beans and more. The other box includes chicken, cheese, milk, eggs, tortillas, bread, sweet potatoes, russet potatoes and when available, fresh fruit. Children age 12 and under receive toys.
Currently, the greatest needs are unwrapped toys and non-perishable food such as cans of corn, green beans, fruit, soup, tuna and peanut butter. Several local businesses and suppliers have donated most of the perishable items needed for the food baskets.
Donations for the food and toy baskets are needed immediately, as they will be delivered by Turlock Together volunteers on Dec. 19 and 21. Monetary donations are tax-deductible. Cash and checks made out to Turlock Together can be dropped off or mailed to the Salvation Army at 893 Lander Ave., Turlock, 95381. Toys and food may be delivered to a collection center at the Turlock Fruit Company, 500 S. Tully Rd. between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 10 a.m. through 3 p.m. on Saturdays through Dec. 17.  Turlock City Hall, all Turlock fire stations and Hilmar Lumber also accept donations.
Cash donations also are sought to purchase food for the free Turlock Together Christmas dinner held annually for those in need or persons who are alone on Christmas Day at the Salvation Army. The dinner will be held from noon until 2 p.m. on Christmas Day. Now in its 10th year, almost 1,000 guests were served at last year’s Christmas dinner and that number is expected to be even higher this year due to high unemployment rates and worsening economic conditions.
For additional information, on Turlock Together baskets or the Christmas dinner visit www.turlocktogether.com or call the Salvation Army at 667-6091.
To contact Kristina Hacker, e-mail khacker@turlockjournal.com or call 634-9141 ext. 2004.
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