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Knife sharpening to help needy families at Thanksgiving

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) -- Sharp knives cutting down on hunger this Thanksgiving: that's the Coastal Cupboard's goal for three unusual charity events that kicked off on Thursday.

With Thanksgiving only three weeks away, charities are usually putting the finishing touches on stocking the shelves with supplied, but after this year's record rainfall and flooding they're replenishing a depleted stock.

At the Coastal Cupboard in Mount Pleasant, Brad Pitner is plying his cutlery skills. he and his staff are sharpening knives of all shapes and sizes for customers who donated dollars to Charleston Basket Brigade, a group that provides food for families at Thanksgiving.

The fundraiser focuses on a greater demand for groceries this season.

"Especially after the flooding this season and everything there's just a way bigger need than ever for this, especially for this charity," Pitner said.

Inside the pantry at East Cooper Community Outreach, volunteer Bob Driscoll browses the shelves for groceries.

"We have cookies, pudding mix, cake mix," he says wandering up and down the aisles.

He's assembling bags of ingredients for more families asking for help.

"Those numbers are definitely higher and certainly I attribute that to folks being displaced with the flood," Rachel Vane said.

Directors at ECCO say catastrophic flooding in October is leading to a greater demand for their services this November.

"There's definitely been a huge increase. Just about 50 percent over October of 2014. I certainly believe that has everything to do with the flooding that's occurred in our area," Vane said.

As food requests are granted, those at ECCO work to keep up with the demand of a seasonal surge in holiday help.

"It really takes all of us to help our neighbors in need," Vane said.

While East Cooper has partnerships with Trident United Way and Seacoast Church, they're still accepting donations of money and non-perishable food.

The knife-sharpening event for Charleston Basket Brigade at the Coastal Cupboard continues through Sunday.

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