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Holiday Food Pantry Drive is in need of donations; only one week left

Organizers of the 14th annual Holiday Food Pantry Drive are hopeful the community will join in to help feed the hungry this Christmas.

Money raised by the food drive, which is sponsored by The Daily Leader and the Bank of Brookhaven, is divided equally between five local organizations that help local individuals. They are St. Francis of Assisi/St. Vincent de Paul, Union Hall Baptist Church, St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, Greater Hope Foundation and Bethel AME.

All funds collected go to the charities.

“One hundred percent of every penny that comes in goes to the five food pantries,” said Bank of Brookhaven President Shannon Aker.

Aker appreciates all donations that come in during the drive, no matter how large or how small.

“Whatever you can give, it sure does help,” he said. “Giving is something that everybody can do. It doesn’t have to be a large donation.”

Aker knows the people who run the food pantries and is amazed at how frugal they can be to make the most of what they’re given.

“Most of them have been doing it for a long time,” he said. “They know the needs. It’s year round for them, not just this time of year.”

In the past, the Holiday Food Pantry Drive has received generous donations from Sunday School classes, individuals, businesses, churches, schools and organizations.

“There have been those who want to help who have picked this cause in the past,” he said. “I hope some of them will pick it up again and help us finish strong.”

Organizers have set a goal of $10,000. To date, $2,000 has been collected.

Donors have the option of giving in honor or memory of someone, anonymously, as a business, organization or as an individual. A grand total of donations will be printed in each edition of the newspaper until the drive ends Dec. 15.

Donations will be accepted at both The Daily Leader and Bank of Brookhaven. Checks can be made out to Holiday Food Pantry. Donations can be mailed to P.O. Box 551, Brookhaven, MS 39602. They’ll also be accepted at the newspaper office.

Contributions to the Holiday Food Pantry also can be mailed to the bank, given to bank cashiers or donated through the drive-through window.

“Already, contributions have been received and we thank those individuals for giving,” said Daily Leader Publisher Luke Horton. “We also thank those who will give in the future and encourage everyone to take part in this effort.”