Christmas (basket) blessings abound at Yukon Sharing

More than 200 baskets distributed in 36th annual effort

Forming an assembly line to fill Yukon Sharing Christmas baskets with fresh food for recipient pick-up are, from left, Executive Director Missy King and Board of Directors Christy Stanley and State Rep. Rhonda Baker. (Photo by Cara Pattison)

By Cara Pattison
Contributing Writer

Nobody knows how to warm hearts on the chilliest of mornings like the Yukon Sharing Ministries.

After months of collecting money and donations for fresh and nonperishable food items, the ministry leadership opened their doors on Saturday morning to provide those in-need via their 36th Annual Christmas Food Basket program.

Year-round, the ministry provides new and used clothing, food, household items, and other needed services.

The nonprofit service agency’s special Christmas Food Basket program is for anyone that needs help during the holiday season. Recipients live in the Yukon school district, including ZIP codes 73099, 73085, 73127.

Father and daughter duo Ted Lee and Juli Vaughn spend a Saturday together volunteering for Yukon Sharing Ministries. It was decided that Vaughn, who is visiting her parents from Eagle River, Alaska, is definitely the volunteer that drove the farthest on Christmas Food Basket pick-up day. (Photo by Cara Pattison)
Making sure every Christmas Basket recipient has a chance to “break bread” with their family are, from left, Yukon Sharing Board of Directors member Tammy McKee and Volunteer of the Year Sandy Ingram. (Photo by Cara Pattison)

While food pick-up lasts only one day, the preparation of the baskets is a year-long process.

Of the more than 200 Christmas food baskets presented to applicants, each contained donated and purchased fresh and nonperishable food items that the ministry has been collecting or planning to receive for months, Yukon Sharing Executive Director Missy King said.

“Each basket contained a turkey with stuffing and cranberry sauce, or a bone-in ham with beans and cornbread. Additionally, recipients received five cans of vegetables, a dozen eggs, a gallon of milk, five pounds of potatoes, a dozen rolls, a loaf of bread, and brownies for dessert.”

Since the Christmas Food Basket application opened several months ago, county residents have been anxiously awaiting the big day – food pick-up day. Yukon Sharing set up an appointment time for each recipient to drive through and pick up their basket at 4 N. Sixth St.

With dinner rolls abounding, Yukon Sharing Vice President Pam Shelton and Board of Director Stacey Gaylord carefully unload a shopping cart for the car pick-up line loaders on Christmas Food Basket day. (Photo by Cara Pattison)

On Saturday, Dec. 2, foodstuffs were packed in an assembly line by Yukon Sharing volunteers and Board of Directors’ members.

Ministry leadership includes King, President Becky Stevens, Vice President Pam Shelton, Secretary Kaleigh Ferguson, Treasurer Stacey Gaylord, and Board of Director Members Jim Poe, Scott Schuermann, Christy Stanley, State Representative Rhonda Baker, D’Lynne McDaniel, Tammy McKee, and Jay Emory.

Blessings abounded as volunteers packed food into recipient’s cars as they drove through. From veterans to the homeless to hungry families, there were smiles, cheers, and exchanges of “Merry Christmas” galore.

Warmly welcoming volunteers and visitors into the Yukon Sharing Ministries building on a chilly Saturday morning Christmas Food Basket pick-up day are, from left, volunteers Chris Stanley and Jay Emory. (Photo by Cara Pattison)
Yukon Sharing Board of Director D’Lynne McDaniel and volunteer Colin Roy grab food baskets containing bread, milk, eggs, potatoes, turkey, and other fresh goods to pack into vehicles for Christmas Basket recipients. (Photo by Cara Pattison)