During its 25-year history, the North Tahoe Holiday Food and Clothing Giveaway has been a real community program, primarily the brainchild of the Board of Realtors, local Tahoe real estate companies and local churches.
Most recently, its leadership has come from the North Tahoe Hebrew Congregation. This year, there will be a changing of the guard to keep this important giving tradition alive.
Although NTHC members will stay involved as supporters and volunteers, event leadership will now be brought to you by Tahoe Neighborhood Table, United for Action, and Meera Beser, organizer of the North Tahoe Community Thanksgiving Celebration.
“We discussed, at length, the duplication of services during the holiday season and decided this traditional event needed some modernizing,” Beser said. “I was hoping to have a bit more time to organize the event, but I do enjoy a challenge. This year’s Thanksgiving celebration practically organized itself, and I have plenty of energy to spend on this new program.”
The focus of the revamped Holiday Clothing and Food Giveaway will be non-food essentials; protein-rich, easy-access foods; and new or gently used warm winter clothing, especially mittens, gloves, hats and scarves.
With only a few weeks until the traditional holiday giveaway date of Dec. 21, donations are needed to meet the need for diapers, diaper wipes, toilet paper, paper towels, detergent, bath soap, dish soap, shampoo, feminine hygiene items, disposable razors, toothpaste and tooth brushes, skin lotion, lip balm, and similar items.
“I remember being raised by my mom in a single-parent home and frequently needing assistance. When we ran out of toilet paper, then tissue, then paper towels, we had to use pages from the phone book. I’ve never run out of TP since, but I shudder to think about it,” Beser recalled. “I know this isn’t something that just happened to me then: It’s happening to others, now. If people in need use the money they have on non-food essentials, then they have to use food programs even more.”
High-protein food items available out of a can also are welcomed for the drive, especially for those who can’t or don’t cook, including peanut or other nut butters; canned beans; and canned tuna, chicken, meats and Spam.
Locals should contact Beser at 775-230-1066 for more information, to volunteer, or to donate items.