(MOBILE, Ala.) We're just two weeks away from Thanksgiving, and that means it's the busiest time of year for area food banks. Volunteers at Bay Area Food Bank are keeping busy unpacking boxes of donations and stocking shelves, preparing to feed the 150,000 families they'll serve this holiday season.
"We're going to distribute, over the last two months of the year, two to two-and-a-half million meals," says Executive Director David Reaney.
Those meals go out to families from Panama City to Pascagoula and everywhere in between. The problem this year is, hurricane season took a toll on the food bank's supply.
"We distributed about 300,000 pounds following Isaac over in the Mississippi coastal counties," Reaney says, "and that drew down our supply of canned goods."
Reaney says canned goods are what the food bank could use the most in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving--canned goods and volunteers. That's where George Martin fits in.
"We're cleaning up these products so they can be recycled," says Martin, wiping down a soda can with a clean cloth.
85-year-old Martin has been volunteering at the food bank for years, coming all the way from his home town of Gautier. He says if he can help out at his age, anyone can.
"The big thing is doing it," Martin says. "There's always someone that can help you find a place to help others."
The food bank tells us it's help that's sorely needed this time of year, by families you might never expect.
"They're working jobs, they make too much to qualify for food assistance, but they're still struggling to make ends meet," Reaney says. "They don't have anywhere to turn but the generosity of the community."
The Bay Area Food Bank is the supplier for more than 500 area non-profits and churches over 24 counties.
If you'd like to help them out, you can find more information at http://www.bayareafoodbank.org/GetInvolved.aspx.