Three nonprofits want to ensure that no table goes without a turkey this Thanksgiving.
The annual "Turkey Team" community turkey drive aims to collect 14,250 turkeys by Nov. 20 using four fundraisers, including the popular Take a Turkey to Work Day.
"We can only give out what we get in," said Shannon Coker, a spokeswoman for the Care and Share Food Bank for Southern Colorado. "If we don't get it, we can't give it."
Much like last year, Care and Share is organizing the turkey drive along with two other Colorado Springs nonprofits.
Care and Share needs 12,000 turkeys and roasting chickens to distribute to 79 nonprofits across southern Colorado that have requested help feeding people this Thanksgiving, Coker said.
Catholic Charities of Central Colorado is asking for 1,500 turkeys, and the Springs Rescue Mission needs 750 turkeys.
Far more people have requested birds this year, and the increase comes as the Avian Flu pushes prices for turkeys and hens higher, Coker said.
Care and Share has purchased 3,700 roasting hens and 800 turkeys toward its goal, Coker said. The chickens are for individuals and small families, for whom a turkey would be too much food.
The organization had planned to purchase far more birds before prices rose - meaning it needs more turkeys from the community. It's also asking for $12,000 in monetary donations to help cover the cost of those birds.
"We need them to dig deeper for us this year," Coker said.
Turkeys must be received by Nov. 20 for them to be used on Thanksgiving, because Care and Share must thaw and distribute the birds. Turkeys received after that date will be given to people between Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Here's how to help:
- T-Shirts for Turkeys offers the first chance to donate. It is 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday at Security Service Field, 4385 Tutt Blvd., and at the Springs Rescue Mission, 5 W. Las Vegas St. The first 100 people who drop off turkeys at Security Service Field will receive a free Sky Sox shirt.
- The Stuff the Bird Turkey Drive is 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday at the Marian House Soup Kitchen, 14 W. Bijou St. Frozen turkeys also will be accepted 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Nov. 21 at the soup kitchen.
- A Gobble for All Turkey Drive will be held Monday through Nov. 22 at Panera Bread locations across Colorado Springs. People who donate a frozen turkey or who donate $10 will receive $3 off any turkey salad or sandwich.
- The Take a Turkey to Work Day event will be Nov. 20. People are encouraged to organize turkey drives at their workplace, and to drop off the collected frozen turkeys at Wal-Mart stores at 707 S. 8th St.; 1575 Space Center Drive, or 8250 Razorback Road.