SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) — With Thanksgiving a day away, local food banks are reporting a surge in turkey donations. In San Francisco, St. Anthony’s Foundation charity managers said the need has grown as well.

At the charitable organization’s annual curbside drop-off, Executive Director Barry Stenger said they’ve collected some 1,500 turkeys in the past week, which is about 500 more than the original goal.

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“Every Thanksgiving there’s more food here in the Tenderloin than any other day of the year, but those other days can get pretty tough, so it’s great to be able to have this food,” he said.

Executive Director of the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano Larry Sly said donations of food, along with money and time have been up 10 percent or more compared to past years.

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“Even beginning in late September, October people were stepping forward. I think that people have understood very much that the need has not changed for folks,” Sly said.

He and Stenger said people at the bottom rung of the economic ladder are not benefitting from the recovery, so the contributions make a real difference beyond the holidays.

“Food stamp cuts came on November 1st, so people are going to be experiencing that a lot more and we’re seeing around San Francisco, it’s tough times,” Stenger added. “Rents are going up, so people are always choosing to pay their rent or buy food. They have to pay their rent so they’ll come here instead.”

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