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Heartland Hope Mission's Thanksgiving Pantry serving 7,000 low-income families

Posted at 6:03 AM, Nov 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-22 14:32:00-05

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Prices continue to climb across almost every industry, which has made navigating this holiday season a challenge for many families.

Heartland Hope Mission serves thousands of people in the metro with their food pantry and other financial assistance programs. They’re doing the same for the holidays as well.

Tuesday, November 23rd night will be the final night of their Thanksgiving Pantry.

From 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. they will be handing out either an entire turkey or ham with all of the ingredients to make mashed potatoes, stuffing, green bean casserole and more, all free of charge.

They say they are planning on giving out a total of 7,000 Thanksgiving packages this year.

“You just come to our location on 2021 U Street and find the end of the line. It does wrap around a few blocks usually, but you can just jump in line and drive through,” Heartland Hope Mission CEO Chelsea Salifou said. “Once you get closer to our building, you’ll be handed a very simple pantry form that you fill out. You never have to get out of your car, you just drive on through and we will load everything into your trunk for you.”

Salifou says that participation across the programs they offer has grown a lot since prices began to climb in July, and they expect the number of people that need help to continue to grow.

“A lot of people are really struggling now with increased gas prices, increased housing expenses, increased food expenses. We have a lot of working poor families here in the metro, so the vast majority of our clients are employed, they just struggle with the cost of living,” Salifou said. “Especially if you have small children and you are buying diapers and paying for daycare. It gets expensive quick.”

They are set for Thanksgiving but say they could use some more volunteers and donations for its Christmas programs. Salifou says the number of participating families has doubled already this year.

To donate, volunteer, or learn about what programs Heartland Hope Mission offers, click here.