The days leading to Christmas get pretty busy for volunteers with One Generation Away.

“We picked up a little over 1,000 pounds of food today, so you’re looking at about 1,700, 1,800 meals today,” said Chris Whitney, Executive Director of One Generation Away.

According to the Nashville Food Waste Initiative, up to 40-percent of food goes uneaten.

Much of the food that would’ve been thrown away, the non-profit rescues from area grocery stores like Publix and Whole Foods to feed those in need for the holidays.

“We’re at the Vine Towers next to the Fairgrounds and here there are disabled and elderly citizens,” said Whitney. “So we get to serve veterans and our elderly that are making decisions between food and medicine.”

Whitney said at this time of year, the need for food expands.

“Kids are out of school right now, so kids aren’t getting their free lunches, so the need for food is amazing,” he said.

An expanding need that’s expanding their operation.

“First year, did 20,000 pounds and here we are nine years later, doing 1.8 million pounds,” said Whitney. “So 1,500,000 meals this year and that’s crazy – 1,500,000 meals.”

They’re more meals Whitney hopes to share beyond this Christmas Day.

“By your giving, we can make sure that people over the holidays have a good meal, good food,” said Whitney.

If you’d like to help, you can volunteer or donate online:

Every dollar donated is worth $16 of retail food.