Every year, a local Harrisburg nonprofit collects thousands of pounds of food for people in need, and this year is no different.
On Oct. 25, Bethesda Mission will kick off its annual food drive, soliciting the community’s help in stocking up on food for city residents during the winter months.
“The food feeds people now through the holidays,” said Rebecca Clymer, event/volunteer coordinator for Bethesda. “The donations really enable us to do what we do.”
Clymer said that Bethesda’s goal this year is to collect 120,000 pounds of food by the end of the drive on Dec. 8.
Much of the food will be used to fill 500 boxes of Thanksgiving meals and another 500 for Christmas.
“Those end up in the homes of people in need for the holidays,” Clymer said.
Food will also be used to fill Bethesda’s food pantry and to make meals for residents at the organization’s men’s and women’s shelters.
Bethesda is accepting nonperishable food items such as canned green beans, boxed mashed potatoes, pasta and canned fruit.
These can be dropped off at the following locations:
- Dauphin County Library System
- East Shore Area Library, 4501 Ethel St., Harrisburg
- Kline Library, 530 S. 29th St., Harrisburg
- Madeline L. Olewine Memorial Library, 2410 N. 3rd St., Harrisburg
- McCormick Riverfront Library, 101 Walnut St., Harrisburg
- Northern Dauphin Library, 683 Main St., Lykens
- Elizabethville Area Library, 80 N. Market St., Elizabethville
- Johnson Memorial Library, 799 E. Center St., Millersburg
- Gateway Health Community Connection Center, 1426 N. 3 rd St., Harrisburg
- Bethesda Men’s Mission, 611 Reily St., Harrisburg
- Sharp Shopper, 1577 W. Harrisburg Pike, Middletown
They will also accept turkeys and hams at their men’s mission.
People can also make monetary donations to help Bethesda purchase fresh fruit, vegetables, meat and dairy products.
The food drive is especially important this year as many residents struggle from the effects of the pandemic, Clymer said.
“Especially around the holidays where the expectations are for bigger meals, it can be harder for someone who has lost a job,” she said.
Clymer is hopeful for another successful drive, noting that they have reached their goal in the past.
“We see the community come together each year to meet this goal,” she said. “It really does come down to each person who donates. We are really thankful.”
For more information about Bethesda Mission’s food drive and to find a list of food drop-off locations, visit their website.
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