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Thanksgiving Box Brigade Program to feed more than 3,500 families

Posted at 11:21 AM, Nov 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-02 13:52:57-04

BOCA RATON, Fla. — The 18th annual Thanksgiving Box Brigade Program is back this year. It provides Thanksgiving dinners to more than 3,500 families in southern Palm Beach County.

Wednesday morning, volunteers from two corporations held a contest on who could pack the most boxes that will eventually provide Thanksgiving dinners to 3,500 Palm Beach County families.

“The box contains what we call all the fixins for Thanksgiving,” said Greg Hazle, the executive director of Boca Helping Hands.

The kit includes a frozen turkey on the side. It's a truly grassroots event involving volunteers and business partners.

“You know, because this community has been impacted by inflation, rising food costs,” said Brandon Poe, a Verizon Wireless district manager.

“We also have the cost of housing as a significant factor in the prices that people are facing,” added Hazle.

Boca Helping Hands said those factors have caused the demand for monthly food pantry bags to climb from 6,100 a month to more than 9,000.

“Somewhere around 200,000 of our neighbors in the county are experiencing food insecurity,” said Hazle.

Throw in a holiday that is food-centric and you start to see the need.

“As a first-generation immigrant, this was the American holiday that I most easily understood," said Hazle, who is from Jamaica. “It's an opportunity to be reflective about the blessings that you had during this holiday and think of others other than yourself."

In the end for these two companies, it's not about winning the competition. They said it’s about making our community thrive. And it doesn’t have to be overwhelming.

“You don't have to change the world, you just have to get involved on your street, in your neighborhood,” said Alex Price, Office Depot’s National Director of Community Investment.

Michael Hawn, a Verizon employee, has donated over 600 hours to Boca Helping Hands’ causes.

“I don't know a time when it isn't important. You know, there are people in our community that live below the poverty line. And I think helping those people is the best thing we can do as fellow Americans,” said Hawn.

“We are living out the reality that it's more blest to give than it is to receive,” Hazle said.

You can help feed a family of six with a box willed with things people need for Thanksgiving including a turkey. Just click here, and for $31.48 you can donate that box.