by Leigh Bailey
The day of our third annual Thanksgiving Giveaway started with a panicked phone call from our colleagues at the Clay Terrace Family Success Center.
“There are hundreds, no, there’s a thousand turkeys in our parking lot!”
Luckily they were of the frozen variety. Thanks to an error of unknown origin, the 200 turkeys we ordered (sponsored by Jonathan Allen Washington, Commander’s Defensive Tackle, along with his wife and Sasha Bruce Board member Hannah Allen) became 1,000. We still don’t know what happened, but we are grateful for this small miracle in these economically trying times.
Undaunted, our Family Success Center staff hit the phones and invited other nonprofits in Wards 7 and 8 to share in our bounty. They responded, and a steady stream of turkey seekers came and went all day.
“This giveaway helped not just the residents of the Family Success Center community but people from all over the city,” says Ronnie Allen, Family Empowerment Specialist at Sasha Bruce.
Along with a lot of turkeys, we had plenty of Grace this year – Grace Covenant Church, that is. While preparing to open a new church a few blocks away, they literally knocked on the door of the Barracks Row Drop-In Center last year. Since then, the folks at Grace have been invaluable partners.
This year and last, they were hands-on at the Turkey Giveaway. Members of the congregation and the leadership team provided 250 boxes of Thanksgiving side dishes and grocery store gift cards to Sasha Bruce clients and community members.
“Sasha Bruce continues to find creative, impactful ways to make a tangible difference in our community. This was just the latest example of how [they] meaningfully connect with and support youth and families in our area. Having witnessed firsthand the appreciation of so many families through the Thanksgiving Give Away, it’s truly an honor to partner with Sasha Bruce,” said Stephen Law, Pastor, Grace Covenant Church – Capitol Hill.
Grace Covenant volunteers handed out boxes and turkeys behind the Family Success Center and delivered them to other Sasha Bruce programs. These donations enabled more than 200 individuals and families to prepare a home-cooked Thanksgiving meal.
Another 200 young people at our Drop-In Center and residential programs also enjoyed a special Thanksgiving meal. Ten volunteers provided ten meals throughout the week before Thanksgiving and on Thanksgiving day itself. Most found it a mutually beneficial experience.
“We can’t thank you enough for giving us a chance to celebrate your beautiful youth,” said Rebecca Reed. She and her family prepared a meal for Bruce House.
The Holiday Drive is not over, and we need your help! Join us to fulfill the Wish Lists of hundreds of Sasha Bruce clients and brighten their holiday. View our Client Holiday Wish List and sign up to make a young person’s wish come true this year. Or, simply purchase a gift card for our youth. Contact LBailey@SashaBruce.org for details.