Breaking News
More () »

Maine food banks work overtime to fill Thanksgiving needs

Preble Street cooks 2,000 meals each day, while Youth Full Maine distributes packaged food to school pantries.

PORTLAND, Maine — Katie Brown is on a mission this holiday week.

She runs Youth Full Maine, a nonprofit that distributes packaged food to Southern Maine schools for kids in need, and now seniors too.

So, when she's out of her Biddeford office and a bunch of LL Bean employees say they've collected food for her the day before Thanksgiving, her Portland garage becomes a loading dock.

"It's a huge week," Brown said, after unloading a pickup truck bed filled with food from LL Bean. "It's a long school break, and, so, that's a long break for a kid whose parents maybe don't have the means to provide quite enough food."

Meanwhile, at Preble Street's massive South Portland warehouse, volunteers operate on a slightly larger scale. The nonprofit cooks and delivers 2,000 meals each day around Portland, meeting people where they're at. Executive Director Mark Swann said it means just a bit more to them this week.

"This is just, I think, a little more focused on the meaning of family and friends, and food kind of pulls it all together, doesn’t it?" He posed. "I mean, we all need to eat. And, for us, food has always been a little bit of, you know, the connector."

Preble Street is currently raising funds to expand its South Portland kitchen and distribution center. Swann said, when completed, they’ll be able to cook 10,000 meals each day.

More NEWS CENTER Maine stories

Before You Leave, Check This Out