Reaching-Out seeks donations for Thanksgiving turkey drive

September 30, 2019 Paula Katinas
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BENSONHURST – Thanksgiving is still two months away, but Tom Neve’s mind is already on the holiday.

Neve, founder and executive director of the non-profit charity organization Reaching-Out Community Services, Inc., is already gearing up for his annual Operation Gobbler Giving event in which he and his volunteers hand out free turkeys to hundreds of under-privileged families the Monday before Thanksgiving.

But Neve needs help.

He has put out an email asking people to donate $20 for Operation Gobbler Giving. Those donations, along with support from high-powered organizations that have helped Neve in the past, will enable Reaching-Out Community Services to distribute Thanksgiving turkeys to families in need this year.

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“Each year, our anti-hunger organization provides an event called ‘Operation Gobbler Giving.’

This year, with thousands of families registered with us, we need to step up our game so more people can enjoy the holiday feast. What is necessary to make this happen is event sponsors and donations from kind neighbors like you. For Thanksgiving 2019, we need your support so we can help as many families as possible with a turkey and the trimmings,” Neve wrote in the email.

“With your help,Operation Gobbler Giving’ can rise up to the occasion and not have to turn any families away this year,” Neve added.

“It really is all the sponsors and the people donating who make it happen,” Neve told the Home Reporter on Tuesday. “I can’t use the rent money to buy Thanksgiving food to give to families.”

Reaching-Out Community Services, which operates out of a storefront at 7708 New Utrecht Ave. in Bensonhurst, runs a well-stocked food pantry and offers clients assistance with social service referrals and other forms of government aid.

Neve estimated that 10,000 families are registered with Reaching-Out Community Services. “We have seen a big increase over the last 15 years or so in the number of people needing help,” he said.

Operation Gobbler Giving will take place on Monday, Nov. 25. “We’ve been doing it almost 15 years now. We have a system to doing it,” Neve said.

Reaching-Out Community Services hands out turkeys, along with all of the trimmings to make a Thanksgiving meal.

“We do it right out here on the sidewalk,” Neve said. Families, who are required to pre-register, line up on the sidewalk to receive their turkeys.

Neve’s organization is hoping to distribute turkeys to 600 families this year. He will select which families will get the turkeys. “We’ll probably start with the largest families first because that’s where the need is the greatest. When you have a large family, that’s a lot of mouths to feed,” he said.

The turkey giveaway is one of several special events Neve’s organization holds throughout the year to help low-income families. The group also hosts a Christmas party for children as well as a back-to-school event in which Neve hands out hundreds of backpacks and school supplies to children.

For more information on Operation Gobbler Giving, visit: http://bit.ly/2mNvw9m.


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