Operation Food Search and the St. Louis Area Foodbank to host “Thanksgiving Together”

Non-profit agencies join forces at food distribution event for the first time in their histories

ST. LOUIS, Mo. – Operation Food Search (OFS), a not-for-profit hunger relief organization, and the St. Louis Area Foodbank, the bi-state region’s largest non-profit food provider, are making history together.

For the first time since both of the organizations were founded, OFS and St. Louis Area Foodbank will unite to host a food distribution event that they are calling “Thanksgiving Together”.

The holiday event will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 20th from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm on a SP+ Parking lot located at 611 S. 8th Street, near Busch Stadium. Food vouchers will be given beforehand to 1,000 families in need so that they can receive all the necessary ingredients to create an entire Thanksgiving meal from start to finish.

“It takes the teamwork of both organizations to fill the homes and plates of families during the holiday season,” Meredith Knopp, St. Louis Area Foodbank President and CEO said. “This event is designed to alleviate some of the added stress that holidays can create in terms of higher utility bills and increased food costs when children are not in school.”

The St. Louis Area Foodbank will be providing a total of 1,000 ready-to-cook turkeys and hams plus holiday boxes filled with a variety of complementary accompaniments for a complete holiday meal. The Foodbank will also be distributing more than 30,000 pounds of food including macaroni and cheese, stuffing, mashed potatoes, vegetables and other nutritious items.

OFS, which specializing in nutrition education, will be holding onsite cooking demonstrations by their registered dietitians. The demonstration will focus on a healthy breakfast and tasty dessert. Participants will receive all the ingredients for both in order to replicate them at home. The agency will also be providing recipe cards that illustrate how to cook the entire meal, as well as what to do with any leftovers.

“Our partnership is a step toward making wonderful holiday memories since cooking and sharing a meal together fosters family bonding,” Sunny Schaefer, Operation Food Search Executive Director said. “Participants at this event will have the opportunity to learn how simple and enjoyable it can be to cook healthy, affordable meals at home. This joint effort is a guaranteed success for all parties involved.”

Both organizations would appreciate the following donated items during the holidays: peanut butter, canned tuna, canned chicken, canned fruit, canned beans, bottled jelly, canned soups, canned ravioli, boxed/bagged rice products, and boxed/bagged pasta products.

“Hunger is not seasonal. It happens 365 days a year so we are always in need of food donations and community support,” Knopp said.

Operation Food Search
Founded in 1981, Operation Food Search (OFS) is a hunger relief organization that provides food and nutrition education. With a strategic focus aimed at ending childhood hunger, OFS empowers families with a range of programs and services proven to reduce food insecurity and increase access to healthy and affordable food. The agency helps feed more than 200,000 individuals on a monthly basis – one-third of which are children – through a network of 330 community partners in 31 Missouri and Illinois counties. Operation Food Search is located at 1644 Lotsie Blvd. For more information, call (314) 726-5355 or visit OperationFoodSearch.org.

St. Louis Area Foodbank
The St. Louis Area Foodbank began its service to the community in 1975. Since that time, the organization has grown to become the bi-state region’s largest nonprofit 501c3 food provider dedicated to feeding those in need. Through a robust network of community partners and programs in 26 Missouri and Illinois counties, the Foodbank distributes over 43 million pounds of food and personal care items annually. More than 392,000 people in the bi-state region rely on the Foodbank for assistance each year. For more information on the organization and the issue of hunger, please visit www.STLFoodbank.org.