Thanksgiving, as the name suggests, is a time to be thankful for what we have, but there are those who don't have much to be thankful for. This is why many food pantries give something special during the holidays of Thanksgiving and Christmas to those in need.
Jennifer Crowe, one of the organizers for the Mammoth Spring Food Pantry, said during these difficult economic times, the amount of people coming in to the pantry to get food on its distribution dates has stayed steady. The Mammoth Spring Food Pantry already had its November distribution, and Crowe said the pantry was able to help out about 41 families in need of a Thanksgiving meal. The distribution date for December is Dec. 21 from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. The pantry will be giving out either turkey or ham.
The Oregon County Food Pantry in Thayer also had its Thanksgiving distribution to families and individuals in need of something to be thankful for over the holidays. Glenda Orahood, with the Oregon County Food Pantry in Thayer, said the pantry gave out $10 gift cards for people to get either a turkey or ham or anything else they might need for a Thanksgiving gathering. Orahood said about 180 families came for the Nov. 12 distribution. Orahood said the Christmas distribution will be Dec. 10 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. "Those who need food have to show proof of residence (in Oregon County) and know their income," Orahood said.
Another branch of the Oregon County Food Pantry in Alton has also had success in distributing food for families for Thanksgiving. Daisy Simmons, with the pantry in Alton, said the Alton Oregon County Food Pantry also gave out $10 gift cards for families and served about 167 to 170 families during its November distribution.
Simmons said area churches also collected pumpkins and the pantry purchased some as well to make sure every family had enough pumpkins to make a pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving.
"We average about 160 to 200 families around the holidays," Simmons said.
The December distribution date for the Oregon County Food Pantry in Alton will be Dec. 10 from 9 a.m. to noon.
The Oregon County Food Pantries serves about 350 to 400 families in all.
Thos who have questions about food pantries and where to get food for the holidays can call Ozark Action, Inc. or their local health department.