Thanksgiving Meals Distributed in Dorchester Saturday Morning

It's the reason for the season, right?

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It is an annual tradition and this year -- the need is greater than ever.

What makes this United Way’s largest Thanksgiving Project ever is the fact it is being held across 30 locations in eastern Massachusetts and providing meals to over 18,000 families.

On Columbia Street in Dorchester, 3,0000 meals were packed and given out to those in need. The bags have all the traditional fixin's like stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce, and even a turkey, or a gift certificate to buy one.

Debra Coleman was one of hundreds waiting in a long line. She said the free meal is a great help, especially during a financially difficult pandemic year.

“I just want to say I’m really grateful for the food pantries doing this for us and stuff," she said. "It’s kind of tough with the COVID and food prices going up so this right here is a blessing for everybody.”

“We’re seeing a much greater need this year than past years,” said Bob Giannino, President of the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley.

“The goal is to make sure that those in need will get to enjoy the same type of Thanksgiving that you and I do” said Beth Chambers, Vice President of the Catholic Charities of Boston, at this morning's event in Dorchester.

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