Salvation Army needs 1,000 turkeys for Thanksgiving meals

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - With Thanksgiving only about a week and a half away, the Salvation Army of Northeast Florida has just a few days to come up with more than 1,000 turkeys.

The organization is asking locals for their help.

Every year, the Salvation Army hands out the birds and all the fixings to families in need. Volunteers say for most of the families, it's the only way they can celebrate.

"To help the children, the less privileged to have something to fill their bellies and have that warm family feeling for Thanksgiving, it's the least we can do," volunteer Darlene Clark said.

"Giving back is what everyone should do," volunteer Opal Berrian said.

Major Dean Hinson, of the Salvation Army, said that to feed as many people as the organization does, it can't happen without the help of local residents.

"If people will go when they buy their Thanksgiving turkey and buy a second one, they could get it cheaper closer to Thanksgiving," Hinson said.

The Salvation Army hopes to have a little more than 1,000 turkeys by Saturday. That gives volunteers Sunday and Monday to sort the food so they can hand it out Tuesday to families.

The organization also feeds the homeless a turkey dinner on Thanksgiving at 1 p.m., as well as on Christmas Eve.

"We will fill this dining room three or four times with people to come and eat Thanksgiving day with us," Hinson said.

The drop-off location for the turkeys is at 900 W. Adams St. Downtown. The Salvation Army is also accepting grocery store gift cards and monetary donations.

Call 904-301-4855 to make a monetary turkey donation or 904-301-4780 for turkey drop off information.

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