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Omaha organization donates ground beef to area food pantries

A local organization provided some much-needed relief by donating hard-to-find commodities to a couple of area food pantries.
Published: Jun. 14, 2022 at 7:00 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - High prices at the gas pump and in the grocery store continue to push some families to the limit.

Tuesday a local organization provided some much-needed relief by donating hard-to-find commodities to a couple of area food pantries.

After a two-year COVID hiatus, Omaha’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade, organized by the Ancient Order of Hibernians, returned to the streets of Omaha.

“We are responsible for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade,” Irish Charities of Nebraska President John Farnan said. “We’re the largest solely controlled Hibernian parade in the country and one of the 10 largest parades in the country to go with that, so we are a big parade here in Omaha.”

The organization does much more than sponsor a big parade

At least two times a year the Hibernians donate to area food banks. This time they unloaded a van full of ground beef. Roughly 1,000 pounds are being delivered to the St. Vincent De Paul food pantry.

“When we first started doing meat, all the shelters said John we just can’t get it’ and funny we have just good meats and we know how to get meat, and so we take our money and we compile it and we stretch it as far as we can. And we buy as much as we can. And I’m from an old farm family and you can stretch a pound of ground beef a long way.”

The ground beef will go to families that right now are being hit hard as they try to bounce back from COVID and deal with rising costs.

“The food prices and inflation are just going crazy,” said St. Vincent De Paul Pantry Manager Gillian Cromwell. “We’re seeing it spiral out of control, its hurting people where it really hurts the most and that’s in their pocketbooks. Meat is huge to help us help the neighbors that we serve.”

Officials say the Hibernians are the largest Irish Catholic men’s organizations in the U.S. And they make their annual meat donations for one simple reason:

“We don’t like the fact that the Irish came to America hungry and we don’t want the folks that are here to be hungry, and so we take steps to make sure they’re not.”

The Irish charity organization also donated 1,000 pounds of ground beef to the Heart Ministry Center food pantry.

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