‘It means everything:’ 2nd Harvest turkey drive serves thousands of meals

“There's so many people that need food that you have no idea,” said one person picking up a Thanksgiving meal box at the 2nd Harvest turkey drive.

KENNEWICK, Wash. — Charitable food security network 2nd Harvest is making sure no table is left empty this Thanksgiving. They do a turkey drive annually to help families get a special dinner for those who need it.

“I’m picking up for my family and so many other people in need,” said one person picking up a meal. “There’s so many people that need food that you have no idea.”

2nd Harvest and a list of their sponsors are putting food on the table for thousands who don’t have the resources to buy a Thanksgiving dinner on their own.

“I feel so blessed. It just means so much to me that people care enough to do this,” said the participant.

“This is how they’re going to provide their Thanksgiving dinner for their family so they can have people over in times when they may not be able to invite them over for those family gatherings. They just don’t have the means to do it,” said Travis Uehling, Director of Sales and Operations Planning at Lamb Weston. He was volunteering with his organization.

There were many people picking up food, grateful for an event like this.

“It means everything. It means my family gets to have a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. Without this we’d have been having a small piece of ham and chicken,” said another person.

Food isn’t the only thing to celebrate on Thanksgiving, but also to be together for this special occasion.

“I had someone else tell me this morning that Thanksgiving would have been like any other day if it weren’t for this event,” said Jean Tucker, Philanthropy Manager with 2nd Harvest.

Hundreds of volunteers came out to pack these boxes. The volunteers came from 2nd Harvest’s major sponsors helping this event happen, to make sure people have something to eat.

“Lamb Weston has been a part of this community for many, many years and being able to just provide a little bit of support and help for that is just very important to the company and all the volunteers that are here today helping out,” said Uehling.

2nd Harvest served more than 2,000 meals Monday and Tuesday to people in the Mid-Columbia and Yakima Valley regions. It created a very special Thanksgiving for people who didn’t have the ability to get a turkey themselves.

“It’s a 42 pound box and it has a 14 pound turkey. And there is potatoes, apples, carrots, canned vegetables, stuffing mix, rolls, milk and butter and apple crisp topping. So, we have everything for a beautiful Thanksgiving meal and we hope everyone will enjoy,” said Tucker.

If you missed this event, you can locate food banks and meal programs in the community and the schedule for 2nd Harvest mobile market distributions here.

Each meal box cost the organization $30. To help fund more meals for people in the community, donate here.

READ: 2nd Harvest looking for ‘food, funds and friends’ amid inflation rates