Cincinnati Zoo Employees Donate Funds to Feed Families in Neighboring Avondale

Posted November 24, 2021

11th Annual “Feed Our Community” Food Drive Raises Cash for Cranberries!

CINCINNATI, OH (November 24, 2021) — Many families in the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden’s neighborhood will have more on their tables this Thanksgiving thanks to donations from Zoo employees.

“We joined forces with the Avondale Community Council (ACC) about ten years ago to help make Thanksgiving special, and in some cases possible, for Avondale families,” said Cincinnati Zoo director Thane Maynard.  “In 2011, we served 7 families.  Last year, we served 1,050 families!”

“Avondale’s Avenue District Block Club and Avondale Community Council are so thankful to the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden for their ongoing support and commitment,” said Sheila Holmes Howard, AADBC President and ACC Vice President. “Their generous donations made it all possible for Avondale Families.”

In 2017 the median household income in Avondale was $19,620 and nearly one-third of Avondale’s households had an income of $10,000 or less- (1,737 households). Income levels like this can make it tough to put food on the table on a normal day, let alone a day when a “feast” is a tradition for so many.

“This effort is especially meaningful because the funds raised come from Zoo employees,” said Maynard.  “In past years, Zoo staff purchased, packaged, and distributed the meals with ACC members. As a safety measure, families will receive Kroger gift cards this year instead of picking up a bag.  One nice thing about that is that they can buy the items they like best. Cranberries aren’t for everyone!”