BOISE -- The numbers for Community Cares Day are starting to come in and they are impressive. There s been a drastic increase in food and cash donations. Comparing this year to last, people donated almost double the amount of food and over 50 percent more money compared to last year.
Preliminary numbers for all four charities show donations around $115,000 and 124,000 pounds of food.
All that money and food will help those in need. In a time when the need is higher than it's ever been, the donations were up as well.
When there is a need, people respond. We saw that Saturday for Community Cares Day as thousands turned out to help in Boise, Nampa, Eagle and Twin Falls.
It was a tremendous response, and we've got the food being sorted and getting ready to give it out to families for Christmas, said Major John Stennett with the Salvation Army.
Stennett says there is such a huge need this time of year, and the food and money raised came at just the right time. That's why they're not wasting any time getting the food into the hands of those who need it.
We got a lot of the things we don't normally get any more, canned goods, non-perishable goods, so we're actually able to fill our shelves again, which we haven't been able to do in about a year, said Stennett.
Over at the Boise Rescue Mission, Rev. Bill Roscoe says the food and money will help thousands.
All of that product that we received will be sorted, boxed and labeled and ready to go right on into spring time this year, said Roscoe.
That's a big deal since just last month they served 2,600 more meals than the year before at the City Light Home for Women and Children.
It amazes us, but at the same time we do know this is the most generous community on the face of the earth, said Roscoe.
Karen Vauk with the Idaho Foodbank says Cares Day will provide over 10,000 meals to Idaho families.
That reaches a lot of families, helps a lot of individuals, said Vauk.
And with all organizations, they say the food they received is high shelf life, good quality food.
That's what this is about, it's that engagement, that really energizing force that brings everyone together because they want to be a part of something important, that matters, said Vauk.
The Idaho Community Foundation, the organization handling all the money, is still counting and waiting for money that's been pledged but not yet collected.
Comparing 2011 to 2012, here s the breakdown:
All told, we're looking at a cash increase of 68 percent and a food donation increase of 93 percent.
If you would still like to get involved you can still donate here, and on our mobile apps.