Feeding the Needy
Luncheon Fundraiser
The Covington Rotary Club is thrilled to welcome U.S. Senator John Kennedy as the distinguished guest speaker at its 2019 Feeding the Needy Fundraising Luncheon. Join us as we gather for food and fellowship with Sen. Kennedy while also helping to make the upcoming holiday season a little brighter for thousands of area families in need.
Ticket sales support the Covington Rotary Club's Feeding the Needy initiative, which is celebrating its 18th year. The luncheon paves the way for club members and countless other volunteers to prepare and deliver more than 1,500 cooked turkeys with all the trimmings on Christmas morning, feeding thousands of area families in need each year.
Luncheon seating is limited, and tickets must be purchased online this year. In addition to individual tickets, tables of eight may be purchased and are a great way to gather family and friends to kick off the Thanksgiving holiday. Note that this is the first time the luncheon will not be held on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, a move that should minimize holiday week conflicts and allow even more supporters to attend.
Sponsorships are also available and include:
• Platinum Presenting Sponsor ($10,000)
• Gold ($5,000)
• Silver ($3,000)
To purchase tickets or sponsorships, or to make a donation, click on the green "Tickets" button at the top of this page. Sponsorships may also be purchased by contacting Susan Sheehan at susan@dmtrace.com or 985.778.1797.
About Feeding The Needy
Feeding the Needy was founded in 2002 by John Baldwin and Craig Babylon to provide food on Christmas day for families in need on the Northshore. John and Craig shared the idea with Deacon Skip Graffinini, who was the executive director of The Covington Food Bank, which is now The Northshore Food Bank, and learned that The Food Bank was  servicing sixty to sixty five families at that time. A decision was made to move forward and the project was named "Feeding the Needy". The Covington Rotary Club was approached for support and special focus was put on providing food for the school children who, during the holidays, do not receive the meals they receive at school and depend on as their main source of nutrition.
Each year on December 23 and 24, volunteers from all over the area come together to prepare Christmas boxes that include a 14 to 16 pound cooked turkey with numerous side dishes and dessert.  Each box has enough food to feed a family of four to five with larger families receiving additional boxes. Deliveries are made to families throughout the Northshore area including St. Tammany, Washington and Tangipahoa parishes. On Christmas morning, Rotarians and other community volunteers hand deliver the boxes to the homes of the identified families. Each family only needs to heat the food and it is ready to serve as a substantial Christmas Day meal and have left overs to help on the days leading up to school reopening.
Monetary Donations
Besides the fundraising luncheon which is held on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving at the Briggs Assembly Center on St. Paul's School campus, FTN relies heavily on financial donations. Because of the support from so many generous volunteers and strong partnerships, FTN is able to operate with minimal administrative costs.  Donations for FTN are accepted year round and can be made below.
To Mail a Check: Checks can be made payable to The Covington Rotary Foundation, which is a 501(c)3 foundation with the corresponding tax status. Please mail checks to The Covington Rotary Club, PO Box 541 Covington, LA 70433.   Checks can also be dropped off at Baldwin Motors, 1730 N Hwy 190, in Covington.
To Donate On-line:   CLICK HERE to make an online donation.
There are many opportunities to volunteer to make this program a success and they are listed below.
  • DATA ENTRY:  Volunteers are from November 30th through December 20th to help type in the Applications and cross check for correct addresses.  This Data Entry is done at Baldwin Motors, 1730 N Hwy 190 in Covington, from Please contact Diona at 985-892-2203 extension 9 to schedule a time to volunteer.
Volunteers on December 23rd and 24th are needed at St Paul’s School Cafeteria from 9AM until finished which is usually about 3:00 pm. Specific areas of volunteering include: 
  • WELCOME/SIGN-IN DESK:  9:00 a.m. until finished, track service hours, register volunteers, answer questions about the project and Rotary, assist where needed, including running errands if necessary. This team will also handle securing each day’s lunch for the volunteers.
  • CHILDREN’S AREA: 9:00 a.m. (all children between the ages of 4 and 9 will go to the Children’s Area and not to the cafeteria this year) – children will be making Christmas cards to go with the letters from the Covington Rotary Club to the many sponsors, donors and volunteers who help make this program happen every year. Families with crafting supplies are invited to donate them to this purpose.
  • LOADING DOCK: 9:00 a.m. the first part of the morning of Dec 23rd is dedicated to unloading the canned and boxed food, boxes, supplies and turkeys that will go into the boxes. Generally, we have a line of people that begins inside the refrigerated trucks and extends into the cafeteria. The turkeys and other foods are removed from the trucks and then stacked in the center of the cafeteria. At the same time, we have another line of folks unloading canned goods from another truck or trailer parked in the front of the cafeteria. We recommend you bring a pair of gloves to handle the frozen turkeys. This team will also place the turkeys in bags to contain the condensation while they thaw and to protect the workspace from too much moisture. Over the course of the day, this team will oversee placing the supplies in each box and ensuring that each box is packed correctly. At the end of each day, that day’s packed boxes will be loaded back into the refrigerated trucks and the coolers in the cafeteria.
  • RECYCLING and ROOM PREP: 9:00 a.m. all of the chairs need to be stacked and moved out of the way of the work that will be taking place throughout the days of the 23rd-25th. Then the tables need to be arranged in a way that allows work to be done both around and on top of them. This team of workers will also begin the process of assembling the boxes while the food and supplies are being unloaded from the trucks. As the supplies are unloaded this crew is also responsible for collapsing and collecting all used cardboard boxes. These will be taken to a recycling center periodically. When all boxes are in the coolers and ready for delivery the room prep team will also help fold the tables and prepare the cafeteria for the volunteers who will come on Christmas morning to make the deliveries. Signage indicating the areas that will be delivered to will be posted on the windows above the tables. This last part requires coordination with the computer team.
Volunteers are needed Christmas morning, from 7:30am to 9:30am at St Paul’s Cafeteria, in the following areas
  • DELIVERY STATIONS – these are usually manned by Rotarians, but we may need volunteers from the crowd. This team hands out the addresses to the volunteers.
  • LOADING BAYS – we need a few strong adult helpers at each of the three or four loading areas to ensure that each delivery vehicle has the correct number of boxes for delivery.
  • DELIVERY/GOOD SAMARITANS – the bulk of the people who volunteer on Christmas Day come to deliver the boxes to the needy families of Covington and the surrounding areas. After a thank you announcement, a Christmas prayer and perhaps a song or two, the individuals and families who will deliver the Christmas boxes line up according the geographic region they hope to deliver to. The volunteers/Rotarians at the Delivery Stations assist with the distribution of the addresses and then the volunteers get into their cars and head to the loading bays where they pick up the boxes. At that point, the volunteers follow the directions and begin delivering. Rarely are there problems with the addresses, but if there are, each volunteer will have a contact number of the family to whom they are delivering and a trouble-shooting number to contact John Baldwin.
  • CLEAN-UP/FLOATERS –after the directions and boxes are handed out we need to clean up the cafeteria, kitchen, and coolers, and put everything back the way we found it. The last batches of recycling and trash need to be taken care of and the premises swept and closed. With 8-10 people this can be done quickly and everyone can be back with their families by approximately 9:30.                                                                              
Please contact Jill by email at jilla@s-wfoods.com to sign up to volunteer on December 23-25.