FLORENCE, S.C. – For the second consecutive year, Mercy Medicine Free Clinic partnered with the student nurses at Francis Marion University to hold a Christmas turkey/canned food giveaway.
The food was directed toward uninsured patients and other needy residents of the greater Florence community.
Mercy Medicine Free Clinic is one of 40 free clinics throughout South Carolina that provides free health and dental care to the uninsured, indigent, and prison-released members of our community.
The "needy" are particularly vulnerable to malnutrition around holiday times, including Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter.
FMU nursing students collected a large assortment of canned food, which was paired with 50 frozen turkeys weighing 600 to 650 pounds from Piggly Wiggly and given to patients who were beforehand given a "turkey ticket" for redemption on a predetermined day.
The students contributed and brought in a half-ton of canned food (corn, beans, yams, dressing) to fill boxes, which were placed on a truck and stored temporarily in a local warehouse for further sorting, "bagging" and distribution.
A truck with frozen turkeys and assorted bags of canned food (two corns, two beans, two yams, and two stuffing mixes) was parked from noon to 2 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 18 in the "drive-thru" at Mercy Medicine Free Clinic, awaiting those patients producing "turkey tickets."
The canned food and frozen turkeys that were not redeemed with the "turkey tickets" were distributed to four sites:
• Sisters 4 the Future at 4430 Pamlico Highway in Florence.
• The Regeneration Center on old Olanta Highway (previously known as the Men's House of Hope, before moving to Darlington Highway).
• The Manna House on Jarrott Street near downtown Florence.
• Resurrection Restoration Center on Douglas Street in north Florence.