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Giving back: Food bank making holidays brighter

Elizabeth Medora~ 12/17/2014

NORTH VALLEY – As the iconic first line of Louisa May Alcott’s ‘Little Women’ says, “Christmas won’t be Christmas without any presents.”

Yet for many Valley children, this is their sad reality – they may not be assured of their next meal, let alone a merry Christmas. Volunteers at the Foothills Food Bank have been working throughout the year to ensure that local kids in need have plenty of nutritious food. Through the Adopt A Family program, the food bank has arranged for donations of toys and needed items that will brighten the holidays.

“We can still use donors for adopt a family,” said Foothills Food Bank Executive Director Pam DiPietro. “We will be adopting families up to Christmas Eve.”

The Foothills Food Bank is offering food bank clients turkey or ham and side dish items through Dec. 24. Thanks to these donations, families throughout the north valley, including Anthem, New River, Cave Creek, and beyond, will have a special Christmas meal.

The food bank needs donations of food, now and throughout the year. Donations are always welcome. Canned goods, peanut butter, jelly, pasta, pasta sauce, cans of baby formula, and other non-perishables are always needed. Donations of toiletries are also needed.

“We also have need for funding for our Snack Pack Program,” said DiPietro. This program provides small packs of food for local students. The food bank purchases and packages the food so students always have an available meal.

Since the Foothills Food Bank is a non-profit organization, donations are tax-deductible. Donations given now through Dec. 31 will be deductible from 2015 tax bills.

Another way to support the food bank in this season of shopping is through AmazonSmile. The Foothills Food Bank is now an AmazonSmile recipient. Participants can pick the food bank as their charity of choice; after that, the food bank will receive a percentage of sales proceeds. To sign up, see www.smile.amazon.com.

Help make it a brighter Christmas for local families in need. To learn more about the Foothills Food Bank or to donate, see www.foothillsfoodbank.com or call (480) 488-1145. The Foothills Food Bank is located at 6038 E. Hidden Valley Drive, in Cave Creek.