ELMIRA, N.Y. (WENY) – The Food Bank of the Southern Tier kicked off its Ninth Annual Virtual Turkey Drive today to raise money to help families in need get food for their holiday dinners.

The drive continues through Thanksgiving Day. The food bank's goal is to raise $80,000 to purchase turkeys and holiday meals for Southern Tier residents who are experiencing hunger and food insecurity.

Once again this year, Tioga Downs Casino Resort has pledged to match donations, dollar for dollar, up to $20,000.

Turkeys and meals will be distributed to partner agencies throughout the Southern Tier. According to the food bank, more than 72,000 residents are living at or below the poverty line. Additionally, one in seven adults and one in four children may be facing food insecurity and are at risk of hunger.

Donations to the Virtual Turkey Drive can be made by logging on to www.foodbankst.org. Any amount can be donated – just $1 provides three meals to residents in need.