Long Island Cares asks for donations ahead of Thanksgiving

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HAUPPAUGE -

Thanksgiving is less than three weeks away and local charities are in need of donations to make sure the less fortunate have what they need to celebrate the holiday.

At Long Island Cares, organizers have more than 1 million pounds of donations from food drives this year. The group has about 6,000 turkeys with a goal of 7,000.

CEO Paule Pachter says the group now has enough donations to meet the needs of 90 percent of the members.

"There are approximately 272,000 Long Islanders struggling with food insecurity and that includes 89,000 children," Pachter says.

VIDEO: Extended interview with Paule Pachter

Pachter says Long Islanders are great at showing support and donating this time of year. He says the holidays are very hard on the families who work multiple jobs, trying to make ends meet, so every donation helps.

The Pronto Community Outreach Center in Brentwood is one of the food pantries that benefits from Long Island Cares Harry Chapin Food Bank.

Pastor Jim Ryan, president of the Lighthouse Mission in Bellport, says the organization feeds about 3,000 people a week and with the holidays around the corner, the need will grow.

"Last year, we got record numbers and this year we are expecting even more people," Ryan says. "So we need Long Islanders to collect some food, donate some funds or maybe even do a clothing drive."

Long Island Cares will be open on Thanksgiving for community members to come in and donate and even volunteer.

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