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North Valley Food Bank asks community for help

North Valley Food Bank in Whitefish. (Photo: NBC Montana){p}{/p}{p}{/p}
North Valley Food Bank in Whitefish. (Photo: NBC Montana)

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The North Valley Food Bank is in need of Thanksgiving food donations.

In a press release, organizers said nationwide supply chain challenges are directly affecting food banks this year.

“Normally, we buy Thanksgiving food in bulk, but this year we are scrambling to find certain food items, like turkeys, cranberry sauce and stuffing.” shares Lauren Jarrold, director of operations.

Last year the food bank served 400 households during the week of Thanksgiving, totaling 22,000 pounds of food given out.

This year, with the growth of the Flathead and the growth of the food bank's customer base, they’re planning on giving out upwards of 32,000 pounds of food.

“Kind of unpredictable, where I can’t really secure enough food in advance, and then we are waiting to see what the grocery stores may have in excess that I’m able to buy,” said Jarrold.

With the growth of the food bank, there is also a growing need for volunteer workers.

The food bank is reaching out to the community asking for hands to help with Thanksgiving preparation, distribution, packing boxes and repackaging bulk items.

Jarrold says the food bank is looking for 50 to 60 volunteers so the Thanksgiving distribution can run smoothly.

“Grab somebody and come meet new people and be a part of the community,” said volunteer Susan Rodger. "To be able to go somewhere and do something that makes you feel good I think is good for everybody.”

Volunteers can apply online or just head over to the food bank to fill out some paperwork and join.

If you're looking to make donations, local stores in Whitefish have partnered with the food bank to host a food drive, or donations can be dropped off at the food bank.

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