To prepare for the holiday, the Food Bank of Delaware kicked off its annual Thanksgiving holiday food and funds drive Oct. 7.

The hunger-relief organization asks for the community’s assistance in collecting food items and monetary donations in order to ensure that no Delaware families go without a hot Thanksgiving meal this holiday season.

Businesses, schools, faith-based organizations, community groups and individuals are encouraged to organize food drives throughout the holiday season.

“Food collected through this year’s Thanksgiving food drive will be distributed to Delawareans struggling to put meals on the table through our Healthy Pantry Centers in Newark and Milford and our network of hunger relief partners who are working hard each day ensuring that no Delawarean goes without nutritious food,” said Food Bank of Delaware President and CEO Patricia Dobbe Beebe. “Thanks to the generosity of our community, we will bring hope to the holiday table this season.”

items needed include applesauce, cranberry sauce, oatmeal, cold cereals, pudding mix, canned pumpkin, graham cracker pie crust, canned gravy, rice, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, stuffing, hearty soups, corn muffin mix, canned sweet potatoes and yams, canned peas and green beans, 100% fruit juice, hot chocolate, coffee and tea, evaporated milk, turkey pans and frozen turkeys. Frozen turkeys must be dropped off to the Newark or Milford warehouses.

Those who collect more than 20 boxes/bags of donated food may make arrangements with the Food Bank of Delaware to have donations picked up. In an effort to save money on transportation costs, the Food Bank asks that donations of fewer than 20 bags/boxes be dropped off at the organization’s Newark or Milford facilities.

Food Bank of Delaware – Newark, 222 Lake Drive, is open 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Donation drop-off is at the back of the building near the loading ramp. Call 292-1305.

Food Bank of Delaware – Milford, 1040 Mattlind Way, is open 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Call 424-3301.

For more, visit fbd.org/thanksgiving.