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Long lines for Family to Family food distribution in Scranton

As Newswatch 16's Courtney Harrison shows us, this year, the need was as great as ever as inflation affects many families.

SCRANTON, Pa. — The Family to Family Thanksgiving Food Basket drive-thru had cars lined up along North Washington Avenue outside of the Scranton Cultural Center. Bags and bags were ready to go as volunteers loaded up all the fixings to provide 3,500 families with a holiday meal they might not otherwise have.

"We have a turkey, we have stuffing, we have sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, cranberry sauce, a pie loaf of bread, onions," said Linda Robeson, one of the organizers.

Organizers say there wasn't a shortage of volunteers who showed up to help.

"This is just a really great day, and it's a good opportunity. I love doing service work," said volunteer Gwen Balavage.

"It's good. It's nice to see that there's a lot of people that care and are willing to help out," added volunteer Andy Mackarevich.

Many people picking up meals are thankful for a little extra help during the holidays.

"I'm very thankful to the community for helping us out," Pam Hegedus said.

"The price of everything is so high anymore, so it's been difficult," Christine Porter said.

"And I share, so it works out nice," Stephen Kojsza said. "Everybody gets a little something out of it."

Organizers for this event say feeding this many families wouldn't be possible if it weren't for donations from community members. Even so, Robeson says they weren't immune to the rising costs of food.

"Our bill was almost $50,000 more than it was last year, so we're getting closer. We're still taking donations, you know, for weeks after the event because we also do want to Christmas."

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