By Conrad Dudderar
A Yukon helping agency is doubling its holiday giving this year.
Yukon Sharing Ministry will distribute about 200 Christmas food baskets this Saturday to help individuals and families they serve in the Yukon area.
“Yukon Sharing did a little over 100 baskets last year and we’re pushing 200 this year,” Yukon Sharing executive director Missy King said. “We were at 186 last week and we’re buying (food) for 200.
“The larger number is good. We’re glad that we’re helping more people.”
Yukon Sharing Christmas basket recipients will receive turkeys, hams, vegetables, potatoes, milk, eggs, and desserts.
Larger families get a turkey and dressing and smaller families get a spiral-sliced ham and beans.
“We fill each food basket up as full as we can, with everything we think they might need for a Christmas holiday meal,” King said.
Volunteers will meet Thursday at the Yukon Sharing office, 4 N 6th, to start putting together the food baskets for Saturday’s huge distribution.
Yukon Sharing will deliver 31 food baskets to residents at Nina Willingham Senior Housing, 900 E Vandament. Most other recipients will come to the Yukon Sharing office (north of Main Street) on Saturday to pick up their Christmas meal goods.
“We try to do it by noon, but we’re going to have almost 200 this year, so it may take us a little longer than that,” King said. “We’ll either text or call them to give them a time to show up.”
Yukon Sharing’s first-year director attributed the large increase in holiday basket recipients to more people knowing about this service.
“We’ve ‘gotten out there’ and we’ve let people know,” King said. “We’ve worked with the schools (and counselors) and we’re now open more so we’re seeing more people. So we’re letting them know that this is available.
“We’ve also talked about it at morning coffees and different meetings.”
King, who became Yukon Sharing’s executive director Aug. 1, is both excited and anxious about her first food basket distribution.
“I’m looking forward to it and also a little nervous about it, especially since I haven’t seen it all pulled off yet,” she said. “We’ve ordered all the food, which comes in on Thursday. We’ll be picking up from all over and then start loading up.”
King credited the efforts of Yukon Sharing’s volunteers who will help with the annual effort. Helpers include some Yukon High School students – members of Darryl Andrews’ leadership class who’ll help both Thursday evening and Saturday morning.
She offered kudos to Goose and Liz Reed, who donated funds to buy meat for the Christmas baskets.
Yukon Sharing provides clothing, food, household goods, and other necessary services to people who meet income guidelines.
Yukon Sharing Ministry was founded in 1987 with a vision to offer everyone who can benefit a “hand up” – not a “hand out.”
The helping agency serves those who live in the Yukon school district, specifically in the 73099, 73085 and 73127 zip codes.
For more information, call 354-9456 or email firstname.lastname@example.org