Food donations greatly needed for holidays


Planning for the holiday season started and non profits are quickly realizing they're coming up short.

"We need more turkeys. We only have a couple of weeks go to and this is all we have at this moment in time," says Rick Larson, a Salvation Army cook.

There were 68 donated turkeys that just came into San Jose's Salvation Army, but that is less than half of what they need. In Antioch, it's even worse. That facility needs 150 turkeys by Thanksgiving. Right now they have seven.

"It has gotten worse, each year it has climbed about 30-40,000 more people we've helped since 2007," says Salvation Army Major Richard Larson.

The numbers of the needy coincides with the recession. Still, in past years, donations have met the increased demand for help, until now.

"We have seen an 8-percent decline in donations compared to last year, which is scary for us, considering that the need has grown," says Tami Cardenas from Second Harvest Food Bank.

And that's where Cotton Works comes in. It is a small, independent gift shop in Los Gatos.

"We're hosting the fundraiser for the Second Harvest Food Bank, so everything in the store is 20 percent off," says store owner Sara Fung.

Having a sale in this store is very rare. It hasn't happened in 10 years, not even last year, when business was down 20 percent.

"Holiday time, everybody needs help and if I can get some business and also help the non-profit organization, I think that's a win, win for everybody," says Fung.

Customers have a choice; they can either pocket the 20-percent savings or donate it to Second Harvest Food Bank, which supplies meals to dozens of non profits including the Salvation Army.

"I'm donating the portion that was discounted from those items to Second Harvest this evening," says Mindy Frankel, a Los Gatos resident.

Cotton Works is hoping to make a $5,000 donation by the end of Thursday night.

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