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$8K shortfall with eight days to go to secure Christmas hams, turkeys for needy
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Kari Tapia faces a daunting task.

She’s helping coordinate the Turkeys R Us Christmas effort.

Organizers figured demand would be similar to Thanksgiving when the community stepped up to make sure 1,989 struggling families in Manteca, Ripon, and Lathrop would not go without turkeys on Thanksgiving.

Then last week the final Christmas requests came in from the 34 food closets run mostly by churches that serve the three communities. The true need for hams and turkeys is closer to 2,900.

A number of the requests will be filled with hams that tend to be less expensive than turkeys. The Turkeys R Us folks are also hoping to secure a good price for buying in bulk. Even so, they figure they are at least $8,000 short in the bid to put a Christmas meal on the tables of struggling families.

Organizers noted while a small segment of people seeking help with Christmas are on welfare, most are single mom households, households where one or two parents have been laid off or else have had hours reduced the elderly on severely restricted incomes, and those who have become gravely ill.

If you can assist Turkeys R Us, contact Coldwell Banker Crossroads at 823-8141.

You can also use a special phone number that connects people to the Second Harvest Food bank website. On there it will connect them to the Turkeys-R-Us page and allow them to donate through a PayPal account.

You simply text “turkey” to 209-213-1033 to access the page.

A donation of $10 will provide a turkey or ham for a family while $50 will provide an entire holiday meal for a family of four.

If you have an actual turkey or ham you’d like to donate, you can take it directly to the Second Harvest Food bank on Industrial Park Drive near the branch post office and indicate it is for Turkeys R Us. The drop-off can be done Monday through Friday before 4:30 p.m.