University Students Help Feed Local Senior Citizens

In a combined effort, the Office of Student Engagement and the Berkeley Senior Services are partnering for a Thanksgiving basket drive to run until Nov. 20.

The Berkeley Senior Services in Martinsburg is “committed to giving 30 seniors Thanksgiving meals,” said Ryan Bird, in home care and case manager for the services. “The amount of food should last more than just one meal.”

Donations come from all around the region.  Bird Iexplained that his office rallies with many church organizations and food pantries in and around Berkeley County.  The baskets are an addition to the meals served five days a week at the center.  “In 2013, we served 24,559 meals,” said Bird. “They go to homebound seniors and congregate sites throughout the county, like the high-rise communities in the area, for low-income seniors.  The meals are provided at little to no cost.”

Shepherd students are encouraged to assist in bolstering the available reserves that feed the area’s low-income and homebound seniors.  Donations can be brought to the Office of Student Engagement, and they will be delivered to the Berkeley Senior Center for distribution.

Items needed for each basket are one box of stuffing, one box/pouch instant mashed potatoes, two cans or jars of gravy, two cans of green beans, two cans of corn, one can of cranberry sauce, instant/ready-made pudding or Jell-O or canned fruit and $10 for a chicken to be purchased by the office.

These items can be donated separately or as a group.  Campus organizations are welcome to hold in-house collections for the drive.  All non-perishable food is welcome.

The Office of Student Engagement is located in the Student Center in suite 216.  They can be reached at (304) 876-5402.

For more information email Rachel Crum at or visit the Berkeley Senior Services website at

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