SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — Feed the Hungry is gearing up to give back during its 13th annual Christmas Dinner.
“This is the first time in two years that we’re having a sit-down dinner,” says Feed the Hungry founder, Georgia State Rep. Carl Gilliard.
Gilliard says he’s expecting this year’s Christmas dinner to be one of the largest.
“With inflation and the pricing of things and the need toward the end of the year, we’re finding a lot of families in need and so we call this ‘the big one’ because when we do Christmas dinner, we’re probably expecting anywhere from 3-to-4,000 people,” Gilliard said.
With thousands expected, Feed the Hungry is in need of donations — especially toys.
“We always need toys, we always need bicycles. The numbers are great,” said Gilliard, adding that many have already registered for toy donations.
“The applications have been tremendous on our website,” he added.
In addition to toys, organizers say they can always use more food and monetary donations.
“We’re in need of more turkeys, more hams and more finances,” said Gilliard.
He says supply chain disruptions have made certain items more expensive or harder to find.
“I see the prices that are higher and the accessibility to products because of what we’re dealing with at our ports,” said Gilliard.
As organizers prepare for the big day, Gilliard says this Christmas dinner goes beyond the meals or toys.
“I think it means a lot to families, you know, we have families that are by themselves, individuals that are by themselves,” he said.
This being the first sit-down dinner since the start of the pandemic means no one has to eat alone.
“After two years of COVID-19, for this season, a lot of families, they’re sitting down without someone at their table,” said Gilliard.
You can donate items at the Empowerment Center in Garden City from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. up to Dec. 22.
Feed the Hungry will also hold toy assistance registration at that location tomorrow and Monday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.