Nick McInnis and Drake Vargas, both of Gonzales, unload an ice chest full of meat to donate during Hunters for the Hungry’s annual Clean Out Your Freezer Day collection event at Cabela’s on Sunday.

Others stopped by throughout the day to donate frozen game.

In 1994, a group of hunters gathered to discuss sharing the game and fish they harvested each year with the needy in the Greater Baton Rouge area. The hunters contacted the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, and the donations that first year were given to their dining hall.

The response from hunters was so great that the dining room’s storage was soon pushed to the limits, and help was enlisted from the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank.

Since then, Hunters For The Hungry has increased awareness of their program throughout the state by partnering with five major food banks in Louisiana. By conducting multiple programs such as the Clean Out Your Freezer Day and Freshly Harvested Game and Fish Programs, the organization is providing thousands of meals for Louisiana families.