Pinellas News

Non-profit giving away Christmas hams this week

OLDSMAR — Oldsmar Cares, a local nonprofit, all-volunteer organization, has been working toward its mission of helping the less fortunate 365 days a year for the past 16-plus turns of the calendar.

This is the time of year where those efforts carry an extra special form of appreciation, though.

Piggybacking on their successful Thanksgiving food program, Oldsmar Cares will host its second annual Holiday Ham Giveaway from 9 a.m. to noon this Friday, Dec. 20.

“We’ve been doing the Thanksgiving program for four years,” said group board member Mike McKnight. “It’s been very successful and grown every year so we decided to do this one as well.”

The program provides in-need Oldsmar families with a ham and fresh produce to prepare a full holiday meal.

All of the program’s food is paid for out of the organization’s own fund, McKnight said. This year’s giveaway will be slightly smaller in size last year because of that. Produce for the inaugural event last year was provided by Farm Share, a large-scale food bank and charitable packinghouse that operates out of Homestead.

“We won’t have that this year so we’re doing that out of our own funds,” McKnight said. “But other than that we’re trying to match what we did last year as best we can.”

He didn’t have the exact figures as of Monday afternoon, but he said about 100 families within the 34677 Oldsmar ZIP code will receive food for meals. The program served about 150 in 2012.

Reservations for a box of ham and produce are being taken up until the Thursday prior to the event during office hours. Interested volunteers may still contact the organization to participate. Donations will be accepted at the office or online at

Oldsmar Cares is located at 163 State Road 580 West and it can be reached by calling (813) 415-3742.

(727) 815-1071

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