November 10, 2023
November and December tend to be the busiest months for food banks as the nonprofits scramble to dish out holiday meals for hundreds of people, sometimes in a single day. In 2022, local organizations saw even more need due to rising inflation, reporting up to 100% increases in demand in the early winter months.
To help meet that need, many of those groups are currently hosting Thanksgiving-themed food drives. Some are stationed in physical locations, where donors can drop off cans of food, while others are happening online through websites or Amazon wishlists. One Philadelphia brewery is getting in on the holiday giving with a donation-matching pizza drive.
If you know of another Thanksgiving drive serving Philadelphians, let us know and we will add it to this continually updated list:
On Sunday, in what organizers are calling a very literal food drive, cars will roll into Xfinity Live! to offload food donations from their trunks. All nonperishable food collected will go to Philabundance, one of the city's largest food banks. But Phil-a-Trunk also doubles as a car show featuring Mustangs, Porsches, Corvettes and Mini Coopers. Car clubs will enter starting at 9 a.m., and the donation drop-off begins at 10 a.m.
Philabundance will continue collecting food donations in the parking lot of the Wells Fargo Center from Nov. 13-17 as part of the annual Camp Out for Hunger initiative.
While a bird might be the centerpiece of Thanksgiving dinner, no holiday meal is complete without the starchy, sweet and savory trimmings. The Sunday Love Project is focusing its drive on those sides, aiming to collect 500 cans or boxes each of corn, green beans, cranberry sauce, yams, turkey gravy and stuffing. Those items can be sent directly to the Kensington-based group through its Amazon wishlist or collected through a cash donation of $24.26, which organizers say covers the cost of Thanksgiving fixings (including butter and rolls) for one family.
Bebashi, which provides access to health care and social services to low-income Philadelphians, is hosting two separate holiday drives for food and toiletries. Interested donors can buy items for either off the group's Amazon wishlists. Bebashi also is using its website to solicit direct donations, which will be used to purchase turkeys.
The South Philly Community Fridge has partnered with Rowhouse Grocery to provide 75 Thanksgiving meals to residents, and it's calling on supporters to help cover the costs. Ready-to-eat meals will be delivered to families and unhoused neighbors, and the group says a $15 donation covers the cost of one meal. While the holiday fundraising goal is $1,125, the organization has a higher $9,500 benchmark to cover monthly Rowhouse Grocery meals, which are donated to its eight community fridges and pantries.
Since 2020, Dock Street Brewery has delivered stacks of its pizza to hospitals and homeless shelters across the city with the help of donations from local supporters. This year, it hopes to send at least 76 large pies to the Eliza Shirley House and the Roosevelt Darby Center on Thursday, Nov. 30 as a "special post-holiday treat." Dock Street says it will match donations by at least 20% and may add additional shelters if it raises enough money.