Jacksonville, Fla. (Jan. 12, 2015) – Feeding Northeast Florida (FNEFL) wants to hear from residents who have unwanted citrus fruit in their trees, and volunteers who would like to help collect it, in preparation for the Citrus Harvest for the Hungry that takes place from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 24.
FNEFL is partnering with The Society of St. Andrews in the project.
FNEFL Operations Director Eli Darkatsh says the agency hopes to collect 30,000 pounds of fresh citrus that will be distributed to up to 150 food pantries and other partners in 17 Northeast Florida counties.
“People can help us in three ways – donating their citrus trees for volunteers to pick, or picking it themselves and delivering it to one of five area drop-off locations that day, or by donating their time to pick the fruit,” Darkatsh said.
To donate their trees for picking, people can contact 904-201-4413 or email edarkatsh@feedingnefl.org.
Residents who want to pick their fruit and bring it to a drop site can do that at the following locations on Saturday, Jan. 24 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.:

Southside/Beaches – Chets Creek Church, 4420 Hodges Blvd.
Mandarin – Mandarin Presbyterian Church, 12001 Mandarin Rd.
San Marco/Baymeadows – The Church of Jacksonville, 8313 Baycenter Rd.
Arlington – St. Matthews Lutheran Church, 6801 Merrill Rd.
Westside – Feeding Northeast Florida, 1116 Edgewood Ave. North

To volunteer to help with picking the fruit, people should call 904-830-4379 or register online at www.feedingnefl.com/volunteer.
“All the citrus collected will be sorted, packaged and distributed to nonprofit agencies in all our counties, including homeless shelters, church pantries, daycare centers and senior centers,” Darkatsh said. “It’s also a great way for people with fruit trees to put their unwanted fruit to good use, rather than let it fall and rot on the ground. We can help them avoid the clean-up.”

About Feeding Northeast Florida
Feeding Northeast Florida (FNEFL) distributes food to people who struggle to feed themselves and their families across 17 Northeast Florida counties through a network of more than 150 nonprofit, faith-based and charitable organizations. FNEFL is an affiliate of Feeding America, a nationwide network of more than 200 food banks that lead the fight against hunger in the United States. The most recent localized survey from the 2014 Hunger in America report shows that 38,000 people are served each week by programs supported by FNEFL. To donate, volunteer or find out more about eliminating hunger in Northeast Florida, visit www.feedingnefl.org or contact 904-513-1333.
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