Creeds Ruritan Club food drive brings holiday spirit to families in need

Michelle Cox and Austin Cox, 11, are among the voluteers seen sorting canned goods that the Creeds Ruritan Club recently delivered to families in need, as the organization does every year. Michelle Cox said the family is involved with Virginia Beach 4-H and is glad to help the Ruritans help others. “This is what we do every year,” she said. [John-Henry Doucette/The Princess Anne Independent News]

BACK BAY — Members of the Creeds Ruritan Club gathered with family and friends at the charitable organization’s rural community complex on Friday, Dec. 14. 

They turned an arena that hosts everything from forums for political candidates to 4-H shows into a sorting center, carefully going through donations meant to help more than 100 people in need.

They would be delivered the following morning, everything ranging from turkeys to canned and fresh produce, all carefully sorted into large boxes for specific families, unnamed in the room, identified only by cards listing the number of adults and children, even diet and whether someone in the home is able to cook.

The annual food basket drive, a tradition for years, collects donations from a wide range of local organizations and individuals, including local farmers. Many of those sorting the donations, too, arrived as families, with members young and old pitching in throughout the evening.

“I love it,” said Reagan Vaughan, a 16-year-old junior at Kellam High School. “It’s a great way to give to the community, and it’s fulfilling to give back to people in need for the holiday season.”

Kurt Fuge of the Creeds Ruritan Club served as chairperson of the drive, which benefitted 29 local families, 107 people in all. The families are referred to the service organization by schools, congregations and the wider community.

In an email, Fuge noted that the goal is to provide at least two weeks of food per family, and that the drive benefits from other organizations and citizens who donate food, as well as money to buy food.

During an interview amid the bustle at the Creeds Ruritan Community Complex, Fuge said that community support matters. 

“It’s a team effort to give back to the community, to those in need,” he said. “It’s really nice to see the community come together with donations of canned goods and money and time. It’s amazing, really.”

“Help families in need, community service,” said Robbie Vaughan, president of the organization. “That’s what the Ruritans are about.”

Alex Fuge, a graduate student at Virginia Tech, joined his family in helping assemble the food baskets. Fuge is studying mechanical engineering and robotics. [John-Henry Doucette/The Independent News]
Paige Shaw adds fruit to the food baskets that will help families in need. [John-Henry Doucette/The Independent News]

© 2018 Pungo Publishing Co., LLC

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