HARBERT — The Dec. 9 commodities distribution at the River Valley Senior Center delivered some holiday cheer.

“We’ve got quite a bit going out today,” said Mike Deeds of the Senior Center before helping load food into cars that lined up for the socially distanced event.

“This is an exceptional one with The Pokagon Fund giving us $900 worth of produce and Meijer donating $790 worth of turkeys in addition to the normal government commodities,” said Senior Center Executive Director Tim Hawkins.

The Pokagon Fund helped provide extra food such as potatoes, bread, milk and eggs while Meijer donated 100 large frozen turkeys. All of this in addition to the normal commodity boxes containing cheese, peanut butter, juice, powdered milk, hot cereal, canned peas and beef, pasta, soup and more.

‘We recognized there was a need for holiday senior meals, and we were able to partner with the River Valley Senior Center to fit that gap this year. It’s especially important given the quarantine and the isolation that seniors feel to let them know that they’re valued and provide for their nutritional needs too,” said Dan Petersen, executive director of The Pokagon Fund.

Deeds said a total of 91 commodity boxes came in the day before, enough to serve about 100 people.

A group of 10 volunteers loaded vehicles with all of that food. Hawkins said most of them help out every month from 12:30 to 3 p.m.

Deeds said the November distribution also was larger than normal, with about 110 bags and boxes handed out.

Hawkins said the Senior Center is currently providing van service, items from its loan closet, and some health-related services such as a foot clinic. Over-the-phone services such as insurance advice also are

“Most of our inside activities are on pause right now. We’re hoping maybe by the end of the month to get going again,” he said. “We’re helping where we can help.”

For more info, call the River Valley Senior Center at (269) 469-4556.

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