Group packs 75,600 meals for needy

A meal-packaging event in Ledyard last weekend yielded the largest number of meals packaged in the organizer's 2-year history in New England.

Matthew Martin, regional manager of New England's branch of Outreach Inc. - an Iowa-based nonprofit that runs the meal-packaging program Kids Care - said about 500 people packaged 75,600 meals Saturday for distribution to local food shelters, schools and the Connecticut Food Bank.

Five Ledyard churches partnered in hosting the event at Ledyard Middle School - St. Luke's Lutheran Church, United Methodist Church of Gales Ferry, St. David's Episcopal Church, Our Lady of Lourdes Church and Ledyard Congregational Church - along with Mystic-based engineering firm Structural Integrity. Donors raised about $19,000, Martin said, for healthy meals that cost 25 cents apiece.

Martin said the biggest packaging effort up until Saturday's was 52,000 meals in one day. The record-breaking event far exceeded the goal for the day. "It was a sight to behold," he said.

-Anna Isaacs

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