Giving Back: How to Help Those in Need This Holiday Season

Cardinal Innovations Healthcare — November 6, 2020 — 4 min read
As we head into the holiday season, unemployment and food insecurity have become critical issues affecting our members, friends and neighbors in North Carolina.

Food is the biggest need for families not only around the holidays but year-round and especially now with the COVID-19 pandemic leaving many unemployed. Unemployment rates (not seasonally adjusted) increased in 95 of North Carolina’s 100 counties in September 2020, according to the N.C. Department of Commerce.

Even those who are employed may struggle to keep food on the table. Feeding America, a national nonprofit food bank network, estimates that food insecurity has affected nearly 1 in 5 North Carolinians, or 19.3% of the population, in 2020. (Food insecurity refers to any disruption of food intake or eating patterns because of lack of money and other resources.) Nearly 29% of children are estimated to have experienced food insecurity in 2020 compared to 19% in 2018.

In addition to food, some organizations are collecting hygiene products and financial donations to help people during COVID-19. Others are collecting coats for people who may not have one, making it tough to stay warm as winter nears and the temperatures drop.
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Groups and organizations throughout our 20-county service area have organized holiday drives to help with the growing needs of many. 

Below are some ways you can help this holiday season. This list features some of the food and other holiday drives that have been organized in our communities.

Here are some of the holiday drives our community partners have planned:

Food Drives in Stokes County – we are partnering with Stokes Citizens for Safe and Healthy Communities to do three food drives in November. Donations will be accepted on the first three Saturdays in November. Here are the details:
  • Northern Stokes, November 7, from 9 a.m. to noon: Drop off canned/non-perishable food items at the Francisco Volunteer Fire Department, Inc., 7100 NC Highway 89 W, Westfield, NC 27053. Donations will support the Northern Stokes food pantry. Monetary contributions are also welcome and… More should be made out to Northern Stokes Food Pantry c/o Joel Moorefield, Treasurer 1565 Moorefield Rd Danbury N.C. 27016. View details here.
  • Eastern Stokes, November 14, 9 a.m.: Bring your non-perishable food items to the Canned Food Drive Drive-Thru. All donations benefit the East Stokes Outreach Ministry. Monetary donations are also accepted and can be sent to East Stokes Outreach Ministry, P.O. Box 973, Walnut Cove, NC 27052. View details here.
  • King Outreach Ministry, November 21, 9 a.m. to noon: Contribute to the canned food drive-thru. All donations benefit the King Outreach Ministry. Monetary donations can be made and sent to: King Outeach Ministry, 221 Ingram Drive, King, NC 27021. View details here.
Thanksgiving Holiday Feed in Vance County: Gang Free, Inc., located in Henderson, N.C., will host a Thanksgiving Holiday Feed from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on November 18. Gang Free is located at 940 County Home Road, Henderson, NC, 27536. For more information or to find out how you can help, contact Melissa Elliott at 252-598-0067 or email

Gang Free, Inc., is a nonprofit that serves a unique population of at-risk youth who are socially and/or economically disadvantaged as well as ex-offenders who are having challenges in transitioning back into the community.

Coat Drive in Vance County – Gang Free, Inc., is also holding a coat drive now through December 4. To help, drop off a coat at the Gang Free, Inc., office at 940 County Home Road, Henderson, NC 27536.

Lot 2540 Drive in Rockingham County – LOT 2540, a salvage and recycling ministry that began in 2010 to assist Rockingham County residents living in poverty, is now accepting donations of food and other items to help people struggling due to the COVID-19 pandemic. There is a need for food, finances and hygiene products. Learn more about how you can help here.

Located at 411 South 2nd Ave., Mayodan, N.C. (near Greensboro), Lot 2540 has 12 to 15 regular volunteers and four staff members who help run the resale store (LOTS of Treasures Thrift Shoppe), a soup kitchen (The Well), a food pantry, and a non-denominational ministry. Profits from the thrift store support the food pantry and soup kitchen. 

Charlotte Rescue Mission Thanksgiving Meal Drive: Your financial donation to the Charlotte Rescue Mission will help feed someone a Thanksgiving meal. Every $2.08 you give provides one meal. The Charlotte Rescue Mission has several programs to people who have a substance use disorder and are working toward recovery. View more details or donate here.

Toy Drive in Warren County – The Warren County Department of Social Services (DSS) will host the Angel Tree Toy Drive Luncheon from noon to 2 p.m. on November 10 at the Warren County DSS, 307 N. Main St., Warrenton, N.C. Drive through the circle in front of the DSS building and a boxed lunch will be brought to your car along with an angel that lists a gift for you to purchase for someone in need. Gifts should be delivered to the DSS office by noon on December 11.
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