Food pantries need turkeys for Thanksgiving

Open Pantry director hope food drive next week will help alleviate the need.

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – With less than a week until Thanksgiving, the donation of turkeys for needy families will apparently go right down to the wire. Dozens of turkeys have been distributed but its not enough for families who need help.

Esther Springer is one of the lucky ones. She’ll share her turkey with friends on Thanksgiving Day. “My hope is that this will be a good thanksgiving for them and their families,” she told 22News. “We all hope it covers the family and I’m proud to come down and pick it up.”

The gap between the need and the number of donated turkeys may indicate fewer people have the giving spirit this season. But the Open Pantry’s Matt Castleman doesn’t see it that way.

“I don’t know if it’s a downturn in generosity, but an increase in need in the community,” Castleman explained. “There’s a real need right now. We’re seeing people accessing our services more frequently. So that translates to the decrease in our supplies.”

Castleman said the empty shelves at the Open Pantry will soon be filled with donated groceries. The Open Pantry depends on Rock 102 three-day Mayflower Marathon food drive that starts Monday at the Basketball Hall of Fame.