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Non-profit organization distributes 225 turkeys for Solvang families in need ahead of Thanksgiving

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SOLVANG, Calif. - This year’s high prices at the grocery story threw a wrench for the Thanksgiving Food Distribution in Santa Ynez Valley.

“There is a huge turkey shortage … which means that turkeys are more expensive ... we had to rely on many sources for financial donations and individuals to bring turkey’s for us," said director of development and communications Erica Flores of the Santa Ynez Valley People Helping People.

The organization spent weeks preparing about 10,000 pounds of donated food items for low income families ahead of Thanksgiving.

"We really care about our neighbors and really care that our families are getting the food they need, especially during the holidays," said volunteer Francisca Escobar of People Helping People.

The food supplies included produce, canned goods, and 225 turkeys.

But up until 24 hours ago, the organization was still 100 turkeys short.

“And we asked the community for financial donations and they turned around and made sure we had enough money … and yesterday we went and bought 100 turkeys to round out our donations," said Flores.

Organizers said volunteers at this year’s food distribution, nearly tripled due to the high demand.

"We’re just being a soccer team and we came here as a team you know just to like help people out," said senior Marco Andalon of Santa Ynez High school.

"I’ve never seen this many volunteers. this is a wonderful community to live in and we’re also looking for what we have," said president John Kuelbs of People Helping People.

As long lines wrapped around the Old Mission Santa Ynez, organizers said each family will get a Thanksgiving meal, thanks to a giving community.

"Our hope is that there isn’t a neighbor of our community … that goes without a Thanksgiving meal," said Flores.

The food distribution was hosted by People Helping People, a non-profit dedicated to helping and feeding men, women, and children in the Santa Ynez Valley.

Article Topic Follows: Lifestyle
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Patricia Martellotti

Patricia Martellotti is a reporter for News Channel 3-12. To learn more about Patricia, click here.

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