There are 20 hams and one turkey sitting in a near empty refrigeration unit at the Second Harvest Food Bank on Industrial Park Drive.
It is all that is on hand to meet requests expected to top 1,800 this Christmas for hams and turkeys from 30 food closets that distribute food baskets to struggling families in Manteca, Ripon and Lathrop.
“We’re still hopeful,” said Second Harvest Executive Director Mike Mallory who is coordinating the effort for Turkeys R Us.
The non-profit group is dedicated to making sure families in the three communities don’t go without at Thanksgiving met the need for 2,800 turkeys last month. Now they are trying to do what they can to put traditional holiday food on the table of some of the same families at Christmas.
“It is always a struggle for Christmas,” Mallory noted. “There is a lot of need at Christmas.”
The requests for hams and turkeys drop off due to a number of folks being invited to spend the day with neighbors or family who will provide a Christmas meal.
Turkeys R Us has less than two weeks to collect actual hams and turkeys or donations to purchase them.
If you can assist Turkeys R Us, contact Coldwell Banker Crossroads (North and North Main Street in Manteca) at 823-8141. You can also call LeAnn McNabb at 815-6754, Sue Teunissen at 483-3365, or the Second Harvest Food Bank at 239-2091.
If you have an actual turkey 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.