Thousands Of Boston Families Receive Thanksgiving Meals

A volunteer distributes supplies as part of the United Way’s Thanksgiving Project in Dorchester Saturday. (Jack Lepiarz/WBUR)

BOSTON — More than 7,000 Thanksgiving meals were distributed in Boston and other Massachusetts communities Saturday by the United Way and Catholic Charities of Greater Boston.

In Dorchester, Cardinal Sean O’Malley helped to hand out turkeys and other Thanksgiving ingredients to about 3,000 families.

“Thanksgiving is a time when as a country we come together to give thanks,” O’Malley said. “And one way we show our gratitude is by sharing the blessings that we have received.”

Meals were given out at more than a dozen sites, including in Lawrence, Quincy and Lynn.

United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley President and CEO Mike Durkin said the agency’s Thanksgiving Project, now in its 15th year, has grown dramatically since the economic downturn. In 2009, it fed 1,000 families; this year it will serve seven times that number.

“We’re probably going to distribute 50 percent more meals this year than we did last year, so I think it shows that people still need help,” Durkin said.

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