The 49th Precinct Community Council has begun its seventh year collecting food and turkeys for Christmas and Chanukah in what has become a tradition.
The food drive which involves the school community of P.S. 83, Cub Scout Pack 162, and other community organizations, was founded because the council noticed that during the holidays that there were many toy drives, but few food drives.
“The people who receive turkeys and meals at Thanksgiving are hungry at Christmas and Chanukah too,” said Joe Thompson, president of the council. “Last year we collected 15,000 pounds food and 80 turkeys. Many of the local business contribute.”
The drive collects non-perishable items, as well as frozen turkeys, which are distributed to the Bronx Jewish Community Council Community Service Center and Food Pantry at 2157 Holland Avenue, as well at to St. Lucy’s Food Pantry, Sue Ginsberg Senior Center, Eastchester Gardens, and Parkside Houses and the Beth Abraham Senior Center, Thompson said.
“These are people who are feeding and helping their neighbors,” Thompson said. “The food is collected and distributed in our community.”
Bronx Jewish Community Council, which feeds both sides of the Pelham Parkway, receives approximately 50% of the food collected, Thompson stated. The largest collector of foods are students and the school community at P.S. 83.
“P.S. 83 does a fantastic job every year, with students in each classroom filling up a box with food,” Thompson said. “Last year alone, P.S. 83 collected 7,000 to 8,000 pounds of food.”
On Saturday, December 10, from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Cub Scout Pack 162 will be out in front of Big Deal Supermarket at 1018 Morris Park Avenue soliciting donations from shoppers, said pack leader Angela Rico.
“The cub scouts hand out flyers to people going into the supermarket,” Rico said. “If they come out and then make a donation, the cub scouts hand them a lollypop.”
Any money collected goes to making purchases for the hungry at Big Deal Supermarket, which donates the space, Rico said.
Anyone wishing to donate food can call the Community Affairs office at the 49th Precinct at (718) 918-2032. Food will be picked up, Thompson said. Food will be collected through Monday, December 19.
Patrick Rocchio can be reach via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (718) 742-3393