TV stations help their local communities countless ways, year after year. These days, the need for food, warm clothes, toys, and Thanksgiving turkeys is much greater because of the pandemic. And stations are responding to the need.
Over the years, Market Share has highlighted hundreds of stories showing their good work.
In just the past few weeks, Market Share profiled WLNE, Standard Media’s ABC in Providence, Rhode Island, which collected sweaters for students who sit in cold classrooms because the windows are kept open to diminish the spread of Covid-19.
WDTN, Nexstar’s NBC affiliate in Dayton, Ohio held a food drive, the 39th year they’ve been doing it, to help support local food banks.
KNBC, the NBC owned affiliate in Los Angeles is also conducting a food drive, its 3rd consecutive, for local food banks, as the need has skyrocketed.
WCNC, Tegna’s NBC affiliate in Charlotte is holding a toy drive for the Salvation Army, because the need is up 40% over previous years.
These days, the need for food, warm clothes, toys and Thanksgiving and holiday meals is much greater because of the economic hardships, job losses and homelessness due to the pandemic.
We’ve all seen the images of cars lined up for miles to receive whatever help is being offered.
And help from TV stations continues in cities and towns all across the nation.
WPTV, Scripps NBC affiliate in West Palm Beach, Fla., held its 36th annual Bill Brooks’ Food for Families Food Drive in November and to date, more than $102,000 has been collected.
In addition to multiple on-air promos, newscast mentions and social posts, the station held three live, virtual phone banks staffed by the United Way.
All monetary donations collected will be converted to food which will be distributed to families in need in South Florida.
“With all of the challenges brought forward in 2020, it should not go unnoticed how important a cause food insecurity is during this incredibly challenging time,” said Lloyd Bucher, WPTV’s general manager.
Interestingly, Ashleigh Walters, a WPTV news anchor, donated her orange juice painting to the cause. It is currently up for auction. While Walters anchored morning newscasts from her home art studio for six months, she placed a different painting of hers behind her each day. With 93 different backgrounds in total, the orange juice painting appeared behind her several times during its evolution.
WGN Morning News, Nexstar’s independent in Chicago, held a five-hour food drive, its seventh annual, which collected nearly $60,000 in funds, all going to the Greater Chicago Food Depository, which reports an average of 50% more people in need this year.
WTXL, Scripps ABC affiliate in Tallahassee, Fla., collected more than $60,000 and nearly 1,000 frozen turkeys during its turkey drive, the seventh annual, to benefit Second Harvest of the Big Bend. The 2020 event broke the 2019 donation record by $34,000.
“I’m always so impressed at how the Big Bend steps up to help families in need,” said Vicki Bradley, WTXL’s news director.
“It’s something we’ve seen time and time again since the start of the pandemic.”
KDKA, the CBS O&O in Pittsburgh, collected more than $720,000 so far in its 39th annual Turkey Fund, nearly $200,000 more than last year’s total. All of the money raised is distributed throughout the KDKA viewing area in partnership with the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank.
KCCI, Hearst’s CBS affiliate in Des Moines, Iowa, is helping feed hungry families by partnering with the Food Bank of Iowa on the Hunger Free Holidays fundraiser, starting Dec. 1.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, food insecurity has doubled in general and tripled for households with children.
The Hunger Free Holidays campaign will consist of on-air and digital public service announcements, newscast coverage, coverage on KCCI.com, and social media posts.
On behalf of WNCT, Nexstar’s CBS-CW affiliate in Greenville, N.C., The Nexstar Media Charitable Foundation donated $5,000 to the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina, and also donated another $5,000 to the Salvation Army Greenville Corps. The donations are part of WNCT’s month-long series Caring for Carolina Non-Profit Spotlight.
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