Santa Maria High School families who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic received turkeys and other food donations during two distribution events this past week.
On Wednesday, 75 student families in the Santa Maria Future Farmers of America Chapter were gifted with a free turkey for the upcoming holidays during a drive-through event.
All Santa Maria FFA families were asked to fill out a short survey, and families were selected to receive a turkey based on need, according to Santa Maria Joint-Union High School District spokesman Kenny Klein.
The turkeys were acquired from Grocery Outlet of Arroyo Grande through a grant from Altrusa International of Golden Valley Inc., along with donations from local families, Klein said.
"We are so happy to be able to help out those students and their families who have been struggling during this difficult time,’’ FFA adviser Amanda Rodriguez said. “Many have been facing financial burdens, and the ability to celebrate during the holidays should not have to be one of them.”
On Friday, an additional 55 Santa Maria High School families were gifted with food donation bags from Catholic Charities of Santa Barbara County.
Bags containing rice, beans, cereal, pasta, vegetables and other nutritious ingredients and snacks were distributed at a drive-through event Friday morning at the high school campus, Klein said.
Catholic Charities agreed to supply food after Santa Maria High School Community Liaison Patricia Lopez Barriga began reaching out to local nonprofits about helping local families.
“No child or family should go hungry,’’ Barriga said. “We are very thankful for Catholic Charities for donating the food to our families. This is such a blessing for our families."
Regular meal distributions for families in the Santa Maria Joint-Union High School District will cease during Thanksgiving break, Nov. 23- to 27. However, the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County will continue to provide meals at designated locations throughout Santa Maria and the rest of the county.
To view distribution locations, visit foodbanksbc.org.
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