Food bank need grows during holidays

Organization expects to feed 1,000 families at its outreach event on Dec. 17
By: Penne Usher, Telegraph Correspondent
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In any given month, thousands are fed by the Food Bank of El Dorado County and that number increases significantly during the holiday season. The food bank will hold its annual Holiday Outreach event at 10 a.m. Dec. 17 at the Mark Forni Building of the El Dorado County Fairgrounds. The annual outreach provides low income individuals and families with the resources for a complete holiday meal. “We expect to feed 1,000 families at this event,” said Bill Sullivan, with the food bank. “These are families from El Dorado County who may otherwise go without during the holiday season.” No pre-registration is required for the Outreach. Low-income individuals simply need to show up at a designated time (see distribution schedule). Only one distribution will be permitted per household. The food bank, established in 2000 by Mike Sproull and a handful of community members, collects dry food and perishables from area grocery stores, USDA programs and food drives. Volunteers package up food that is stored in the bank’s warehouse where more than 40 “partners in charity” pick up the food for distribution to those in need. Food and monetary donations are always needed. “We always need food and money,” Sullivan said. “We can easily feed more than 9,000 in a month.” El Dorado County was one of a few counties in California that did not have a full service food bank. From a grassroots beginning and the assistance of the community the food bank is now the largest collaborative charity in El Dorado County, officials said. “The Food Bank, teamed with the community, is dedicated to making a better holiday season for our neighbors who struggle to make ends meet,” said Sproull, director of the food bank. “Due to the economy we expect to see many more people asking for assistance this season.” The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department Star Volunteer Program has teamed with the Food Bank of El Dorado County to provide transportation for delivery to those that are homebound and unable to attend the event. Contact the Food Bank prior to Dec. 9 at (530) 621-9950 for more information.