TAMPA, Fla. - It’s the season of giving, and once again Metropolitan Ministries has made it their mission to be a source of hope and happiness for those in the community who need it the most.
"We want families to have what many of us take for granted and that’s a warm Christmas meal on Christmas morning," said Metropolitan Ministries CEO Tim Marks.
However, in order to gift families in need with a Christmas dinner and presents under the tree, they need the community’s support.
"We’re still working to get as much as we can for close to 50,000 children. We’d like to get them to toys in the $20 range. It’s a big, big effort. Just the toys alone, it’s about a $2 million investment the community makes," said Marks.
Metropolitan Ministries already served over 20,000 meals during Thanksgiving, and with Christmas right around the corner, they expect that number to double. But supplies are running low.
"We are concerned because it’s a long-run ‘til Christmas Eve afternoon when we’ll be wrapping all this up," Marks said.
With supply chain shortages, buying in bulk has been almost impossible for the non-profit, meaning every donation is crucial.
"The toughest things for us to get right now continues to be stuffing, cereal, even vegetables. In the past, it’s never been tough finding all the basics you would want for a holiday meal," said Marks. "If someone wants to donate a ham or turkey that would also go a long way to help us serve."
From monetary donations to boxes of stuffing to handpicked gifts, Metropolitan Ministries says they’ll take it.
"As we say, take care of your family, and then maybe take care of one other family," said Marks. "We can get this done."
On Monday, Metropolitan Ministries will once again partner with Meals on Wheels for Kids for "Holiday on Wheels." Thousands of holiday meals will be delivered to homebound families across the Bay Area who are unable to get to the Holiday Tent due to transportation issues or disabilities.
Drivers are still needed for deliveries, if you’re interested in helping out, click here.
How you can help
For information on the Holiday Tent, hours, other drop off locations, most needed items, how to get help and how to volunteer, visit: www.metromin.org/holiday-central
To donate food directly via Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/34KG4AQ449EHT?ref_=wl_share
To donate toys directly via Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/TL6F6H0NZ19C?ref_=wl_share
To donate food directly via Target: https://www.target.com/gift-registry/gift-giver?registryId=ed112430-02c1-11ec-9fc2-bb953f881906&type=CHARITY
To donate toys directly via Target: https://www.target.com/gift-registry/gift-giver?registryId=4bf779e0-02c7-11ec-81f8-1deab5cee6f5&type=CHARITY
To donate directly via Walmart: https://www.walmart.com/registry/rr/8051068c-fc2a-47c0-baf2-f0d294511e7f