Snowbirds asked to donate food to local food banks before leaving Suncoast

Manatee County Food banks have been hit hard
Manatee County Food banks have been hit hard(WWSB)
Published: Apr. 21, 2022 at 4:53 PM EDT
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MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. (WWSB) - I-75 northbound will be getting busier soon. Snowbirds are heading back up north for the summer.

But, before they go, they’re being asked to donate any unwanted food items to the Manatee Food Bank.

“They have food in their pantries that’s going to expire before they come back,” Millie Fischer, a resident of Cascades at Sarasota.  “So, why not have a collection and donate it to people who can use it.”

Fischer is organizing a food collection in her neighborhood.

She has contacted everyone and asked them to go through their pantries at their homes and donate items before they leave town.

President & CEO, of Meals on Wheels Plus of Manatee, Maribeth Phillips, said they need these donations desperately right now.

“I get scared for the people who need food,” said Phillips.

She is concerned because their shelves are empty.

“We are seeing a huge wave of inflation and cost of housing and rent, and high gas prices,” said Phillips.  “This is the reason why so many people rely on the food bank and our partner agencies.”

Phillips says snowbirds help them out throughout the year, and when they leave, they feel it.

“This is the time of the year we see a lot of snowbirds leaving and we don’t get as many donations here on the shelves.”

She said having them donate any unused food that they can’t take back home with them, would really help.

“I know we live in a great community and people will always support us and make sure there is food here for those who need it in Manatee County, said Phillips.”

Fischer said she plans on picking up items from her neighbors on May 5th.

“It’s an easy thing to do, she said.  “Giving back, it’s a good thing.”

Everything donated to the Manatee Food Bank goes directly to helping people in Manatee County.

For more information about donating items to the Manatee Food Bank, visit:

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