NewsLocal News


Second Harvest distributes 1,000 turkeys ahead of Thanksgiving

Posted at 1:13 AM, Nov 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-22 01:36:15-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — With so many unemployed and struggling to make ends meet, the holidays can be tough. That's why Second Harvest and ABC 27 teamed up, with your help, to give a hand.

This weekend marked the end of our seventh annual Turkey Drive, where volunteers were able to help a record-breaking amount of people.

Everything has come full circle from collecting turkeys at Ponce De Leon Park and Bannerman Crossing during this year's Turkey Drive to packing those 1,000 turkeys at the Second Harvest warehouse.

"In Leon County alone, there are 68,000 individuals, 16,000 children who don't know where their next meal is coming from," said Monique Van Pelt, the CEO of Second Harvest.

This Thanksgiving, Susan Lehrkamp will provide dinner for six, including her three boys. A responsibility that's tough this time around due to the pandemic.

"When you have kids, the kids don't worry about all the stuff," said Lehrkamp. "They worry about having dinner, and they worry about just having a meal basically, and then you as the parent have to provide the meal, and trying to provide that meal is tough, especially when you're behind on bills, and you're trying to play catch-up, you gotta do what you can, and you know, what they're doing is a great help honestly."

It's welcomed help for families like Zahira Berrios as well.

"My husband, they cut the hours because of COVID, and we barely have to pay the rent and everything, so this is going to help this Thanksgiving," said Berrios.

"We know that there are families who, this is going to be their only opportunity to try and celebrate with families and celebrate safely and celebrate deeply what they still have," said Van Pelt.

Along with the turkey donations, the Second Harvest also received more than $60,000 in donations.