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Thanksgiving Blessing helps people in need

By Heather Hintze 7:23 PM November 25, 2013

The Food Bank handed out enough to feed 8,000 Anchorage families

ANCHORAGE – The holidays are a time to bring people together, but they are also one of the most expensive times of years.

Sometimes a family needs a little extra help to get by.

“My husband has a job, we barely have enough money for food most times,” said Kayla Keating.

“I have four kids by myself right now and we’re at a hotel right now,” said Benita Kent.

The Food Bank of Alaska’s Thanksgiving Blessing is there to give them everything they’ll need for a turkey dinner with all the trimmings.

“It’s great. I’ve been here seven years in a row now. It’s a wonderful thing these people do,” said Eddie Nelson.

Volunteers at Central Lutheran Church handed out dinners to more than 1,300 people Monday afternoon.

“It feels good. There are a lot of people out there who are needy. There are tough times right now and it feels really good to give back our time and energy,” said volunteer Jeanette Menchinsky. “The food bank did a great job with the food.”

It was a lot of food too: The food bank supplied enough turkeys to feed 8,000 families in Anchorage.

“We have several more pallets to unload today,” said volunteer Lisa Wilkinson as she loaded frozen turkeys into reusable shopping bags. “We’ve been at it since first thing this morning. It takes some teamwork for sure.”

By mid-afternoon the line stretched through the parking lot.

“Every year it grows and grows and there’s more need, more families that are doing without. This outfit is an excellent thing they’re doing for the people here,” Nelson said.

The food bank plans to feed thousands of families again in a few weeks for its holiday Neighborhood Gift program. Food and monetary donations are still needed to make sure everyone gets enough for Christmas.

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