Local food banks prepare to serve record number of holiday meals
Reporter: Aaron Brackett
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Thanksgiving is approaching quickly and while Tucsonans are worrying about cooking the perfect turkey, local food banks are hoping they have enough to go around. The stockroom was filled to the brim at the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona, but in just a few days, that won't be the case as they distribute an ever increasing amount of holiday help.
Bill Carnegie is the CEO of the Community Food Bank and says the amount of people they help has more than doubled in the past 5 years.
"Our need is up this year compared to last," said Carnegie. "We have about a ten percent increase over last year. Today we are assisting about 230,000 people a month. 5 Years ago, it was about 100,000 a month. The economy continues to drive our business and things aren't going to change until people go back to work."
Just a few miles away from the food bank, the Gospel Rescue Mission is preparing to host one of the city's biggest free meals on Wednesday. Kitchen Manager Kelly Edwards showed 9 On Your Side nearly 10,000 dollars in food to be served during the event.
Pastor Scott Munroe anticipates record attendance to this year's dinner, but says the mission is ready.
"We anticipate anywhere from three-thousand to thirty-five hundred guests that day, which is a little higher than last year, but all indications are that its going to be up again", said Munroe.
If you are in need, here are the locations of this year's banquets:
Salvation Army Thanksgiving Lunch - St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church at 1145 East Fort Lowell Thursday 11a-1p. (520) 795-9671
Gospel Rescue Mission Banquet - 312 W. 28th Street Wednesday 11a-2p (520) 740-1501