KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — In East Tennessee, 1/5 of children and 1/8 of adults are at risk of hunger, according to Second Harvest Food Bank of East Tennessee. The holidays can put even more people at risk of going hungry.

“It is a tough time of year,” said Alyson Gallaher, Executive director of Volunteer East Tennessee. “The holidays can be joyous, but it can be really hard on some folks, so think about what you can give this holiday season to people who may not be celebrating like you.”

Volunteers at Second Harvest of East Tennessee are trying to help. On Wednesday, Dec. 11 starting at 6 a.m., donations went twice as far for the annual Double Your Donation Telethon. 

Even a $1 donation can provide three meals. The first $300,000 of donations were matched. It was the biggest fundraiser of the year for Second Harvest, but if you missed the event you can still give. Click here donate.

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This year, Second Harvest was able to meet that $300,000 on Double Donation Day and then some. After matching the donations, Second Harvest raised $807,784: 

"Thank you SO much for your incredibly generous support for Double Your Donation Day 2019. If you gave on #GivingTuesday or #DoubleYourDonationDay, you helped make this possible. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you."

People who prefer volunteering instead of donating can work with Knox Area Ministries. The organization provides free food and shelter to hundreds each week. As a volunteer, you can help serve meals or serve in the thrift stores.

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Volunteers can also join a meal group with Volunteer Ministry Center. Each meal group is responsible for purchasing, preparing and serving meals. It is a volunteer opportunity for churches and businesses.

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Mobile Meals provides food to people who have limited access to meals and social interactions. Donating is as easy as picking up an extra item at the grocery store.

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