If you’re planning to donate Thanksgiving food this year for your church or school charity drive, or take the gifts to a homeless shelter, it’s time to consider some thoughtful suggestions:
1. When shopping for the turkey for your own family Thanksgiving Day celebration, buy two and donate one to charity. Additionally, check newspaper ads for special store offers you may find valuable. Some markets give a free turkey with purchases of several hundred dollars on one holiday shopping visit to the store. If you qualify for a free one, donate it to a charity holiday food drive.
1. Put some holiday-appropriate canned goods in cartons, including vegetables, soups, fruits, seafood and other useful items. Donate them as early as possible in November, so that charity organizations that provide holiday dinners will have them in time. They have to determine how many dinners they can provide, and to plan their schedules to serve the food during Thanksgiving and/or Christmas seasons.
2. If you can load up baskets of donated fresh vegetables and fruits, you’ll know they are always welcome to enhance charity meals. If you’re a home garden grower, put aside some of your prize apples, pears, cucumbers, corn, radishes, grapes and other great home-grown items to donate for holiday food drives to provide dinners for the homeless and others in need of your help.
3. Packaged breads, cakes, pies, pretzels, chips and cookies are always welcome to enhance meals served by charity organizations. Those items are always welcome in food drive for the homeless. Inquire into ways you can also contribute fruit, eggs, cereals and milk, which will always be welcomed by charities to give inner-city kids hearty breakfasts to get them started before they start their school day.
4. Home chefs and bakers are also welcome to participate in holiday food drives. If you’ll be doing your own baking of Thanksgiving and Christmas cakes, pies and cookies, set aside some of those delicious home-made delights and get them to a charity organization.
5. If your kids want to participate in the Thanksgiving food drive, guide and work with them as they make such easy items as caramel popcorn, trail mix, peanut butter, candy apples and other treats for kids who will appreciate the fun food.
The best foods to donate to a Thanksgiving food drive can be something as impressive as a turkey and as small as a candy apple. Whatever your gift, you’ll know you’ve made a holiday meal a happy one for someone in need.