How you can help local charities this holiday season



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Posted on December 13, 2012 at 6:22 PM

Updated Thursday, Dec 13 at 11:32 PM

AUSTIN -- The Capital Area Food Bank of Texas distributes food to 300 non-profits across 21 counties. The work of inspecting donations and packing it up is mostly done by volunteers. Even school groups, like fourth and sixth graders from Kirby Hall, help with the lighter items about once a week.

Currently the bank is two-thirds full, and Director John Turner says they flip the entire inventory every month.

"Sadly for the last three years, on average, we're distributing about two million pounds of food a month," said Turner.

That food feeds about 48,000 people a week.

"Two out of every five of our clients are children," Turner said.

Last year, Capital Area Food Bank had 19,000 volunteers, but they're always in need of more. Turner says they couldn't provide without community support and that "at this time, any monetary donations are very much appreciated." Currently, there is a matching gift grant in place, so whatever you donate will be doubled.

Meals on Wheels is looking for volunteers to make deliveries. Year-round the nonprofit brings 3,500 meals a day to residents.

Stacy Mefford is one of nearly 7,000 Meals on Wheels volunteers. She's been delivering for more than 15 years and says it benefits her.

Currently 39 routes are without drivers. During the holiday season, more cancellations are expected.
Meals on Wheels is looking for both permanent and fill-in helpers

You can still donate in areas across Austin. There are various organizations seeking volunteers:

Capital Area Food Bank

Stuff the Bus” Dec 14-16th - Fill a Capital Metro bus with food.
Bring your non-perishable items to Whole Foods on Lamar. The bus will be parked outside Friday 8 a.m. through Sunday.
Follow #StuffTheBus hashtag on Twitter

Operation Blue Santa

No reservations. Show up at 8 a.m.

Locations to meet this Saturday to distribute toys for Blue Santa:  
*Operation Blue Santa Warehouse - 4101 S Industrial Dr.
*North Substation - 12425 Lamplight Village
*South Substation - 404 Ralph Ablanedo     
*Central Substation - 812 Springdale Rd      

Travis County Brown Santa

Williamson County Brown Santa

Meals on Wheels

Click the link above for more information, or call 476-6325 and ask for Volunteer Services.