Local food banks in need of donations for Thanksgiving

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Thanksgiving is just over a week away, but ensuring families in need have enough to eat is a challenge many area food banks are facing going into the holidays. Consumers are feeling a big pinch at the market as food prices on holiday staples rise. That’s also keeping some people from buying food they would normally donate. 

“Our mission is feeding people with dignity, and respect,” said Karen Guidaerlli, Director of Operations at the Victor Farmington Food Cupboard.

The shelves here at the Cupboard are full, but the amount of food here does not meet the need, especially at this time of year. 

“We ordered 500 turkeys, and we have 570 folks on our Thanksgiving list. So we’ll be supplementing with chickens,” said Guidarelli.

She also says the cupboard is paying 15 percent more for food this year, and has to rely on Foodlink to survive.

“We can purchase through them, and leverage a dollar times probably 10. So without the food bank, I don’t know if the food cupboard could’ve survived these couple of years,” said Guidarelli.

The Founder of Primetime 585 has a holiday food drive of her own. Last year through generous donations, Karen Inglasia helped 3,200 families have a Thanksgiving dinner. This year she still has over 100 families on her wait list.

“We’re finding that we’re serving five counties. Last year we served two counties. Thirty one percent of the people signing up for baskets, are from rural areas where typically that wasn’t before. So that’s new for us.” said Iglasia.

She says each of the yet-to-be filled holiday boxes typically hold about $75 worth of food for a family of four. Now it takes an average of $90 to feed the same family. In the meantime, she’s teamed up with several different organizations and groups here in the city, for donations.

“We’ve teamed up with four different schools in the city’s school district, concentrating on the McKinney Vento kids. Which those are kids where their families are homeless, or they’re transient,” said Iglasia.

Both the Food Cupboard, and Primetime 585, will start distributing food as early as this weekend. You can donate at the highlighted links.