SPRINGDALE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — The Northwest Arkansas Food Bank is sending out more food than usual as it prepares for the holidays.

According to the Farm Bureau, the average cost of a Thanksgiving feast was more than $60 last year.

“The holidays are supposed to be a really festive and fun time for everyone, and unfortunately there’s a lot of folks in Northwest Arkansas who don’t feel that way about the holidays,” NWA Food Bank director of marketing Julie Damer said.

The NWA Food Bank says more than 70,000 people in Northwest Arkansas struggle with hunger on any given day. So it is working overtime right now.

“Through the holidays, we have several shifts available. We even extended to some Saturdays during the holidays because the amount of food that we distribute out of here is so much more than on a typical day,” Damer said.

Now is a great time to give to help make the holidays special, but the problem really never goes away.

“People are hungry 365 days a year, so those months of January and February especially are very crucial for us to have volunteers,” Damer said.

So now would also be a good time to get the whole family into the giving spirit.

“We have a couple of special family days where children of all ages can come out with their parents and volunteer. It’s really cool to see the expressions on their face when they know that the food that they’ve put in that box actually goes out to help somebody,” Damer said.

With so much hunger in our community, that person might be a lot closer to you than you realize.

If you would like to learn more about volunteering or even holding a food drive for the NWA Food Bank, click here.