CAMERON COUNTY, Texas (ValleyCentral) — As many people prepare for their traditional Thanksgiving day meals, some may be having trouble affording them due to the rise in costs of most groceries, including turkeys.
Local organizations are working toward providing meals but have also experienced challenges.
“Either buy this to last me that week when I have the kids at home, and not have Thanksgiving meal, or do I buy the turkey and then not have enough food for the family for the week?” said the assistant director of Good Neighbor Settlement House in Brownsville, Belinda Bradford.
Bradford said those are the tough she has seen people facing this season.
She said more people are turning to organizations like the Good Neighbor Settlement House, which helps the homeless and people in need.
“We have families that still haven’t fully recovered from COVID. So, they come to get meals here for Good Neighbor. But even more, we’re expecting those individuals and possibly more to come and eat Thanksgiving meals here at the Good Neighbor Settlement House,” she said.
The organization plans to feed three hundred people a traditional warm Thanksgiving meal, but issues with donations this year are setting them back from distributing meal supplies to families.
“Unfortunately, we weren’t able to buy our allotment for turkeys so we can help families in need. We usually are able to buy 300,” Bradford said.
However, they were able to provide 100 families with the supplies, including a turkey and sides, according to Bradford.
She said that list filled up quickly.
Loaves and Fishes, which provides shelter, food, and other resources in Harlingen have also felt the impact of inflation, according to the organization’s executive director, Victor Rivera.
“We have to also shop for our food and look for different organizations that are willing to work with us and pricing, it has gone up exponentially,” he said.
He said the costs are a challenge for their food pantry and soup kitchen.
“We had to change our programming, the way we give out our food, just the way we even distribute them during a given month. We’re monitoring all that but we want to still be able to provide for anyone and everyone who is feeling food insecurity right now,” Rivera said.
He said they plan to feed 200 people Thanksgiving meals.
Both Rivera and Bradford said they are thankful for their partners, supporters, and donors.
“When it’s Thanksgiving time, for example, this year, I know that times have been tough. So, we actually expanded a little bit. We were able to donate to Valley Haven Emergency Children’s Shelter, Sunny Glenn Children’s Home, and then here today, with an organization that’s very near and dear to our heart Loaves and Fishes,” said the President and CEO of Tolerance Kindness Overcomes Movement (TKO Movement).
The San Benito-based organization donated turkeys to organizations, including Loaves and Fishes.
Leija said opportunities to donate allow them the opportunity to hold their commitment to giving back to the community.
“We’re just blessed and feel privileged to actually give during this time,” said TKO Movement’s Vice President & CFO, Tim Tansil.
For more information on resources or donating to the Good Neighbor Settlement House, Loaves & Fishes, and TKO Movement, you can visit their website.