For many, a Thanksgiving meal is taken for granted, but financial challenges or other issues may mean sparse provisions for our friends and neighbors in Statesboro and Bulloch and surrounding counties.
A local effort, Feed the Boro, has helped make Thanksgiving a blessing for families and individuals in need for more than
20 years. Volunteers and contributions are still needed to make the event a success again this year, according to Feed the Boro Chairman Don Poe.
Feed the Boro provides a traditional Thanksgiving meal to about 3,000 residents, along with public safety workers in Bulloch, Evans and Candler counties who are missing a Thanksgiving meal due to work, he said.
"On Wednesday, Nov. 21, volunteers will begin deboning turkeys, plating desserts, taping up boxes and organizing the meal line," Poe said. "Volunteers will begin at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday and work throughout the day.
"On Thanksgiving morning, volunteers will begin at 7 a.m. preparing the food lines and begin plating at 8 a.m. and distributing food at 10 a.m. If you are in town, I encourage you to volunteer in some way. It is one of the most rewarding events I am involved in throughout the year."
Again this year, citizens in need are invited to eat a Thanksgiving meal at the Statesboro High School cafeteria. Meals will be served at SHS from 10 a.m. until noon. However, if you do not want to or cannot eat at the school, meals can be delivered to your home.
"Even though people are thrilled to get a free Thanksgiving meal delivered to them, many citizens are alone with no family and would enjoy being with others to celebrate this special holiday," Poe said. "This is why we are opening the SHS cafeteria this year for citizens to dine in with others.
"Also, we want to remind citizens that anyone is eligible for a free meal. We do not place any financial or other restrictions on this meal. If you need or want us to provide a Thanksgiving meal to you, a friend or family member, all you have to do is call."
To reserve a spot for your family to eat lunch at SHS or to have meals delivered, please call Christian Social Ministry at (912) 489-2407 or email email@example.com by Friday. Include the number of people in your family and indicate whether you would like to dine in at SHS or have the food delivered to you. For deliveries, please include an address, as well as a cell and home phone number.
Agencies, churches and other organizations who have members who need to be fed that have not been contacted by a Feed the Boro volunteer may also reach out to make sure their group is on the list this year.
If you would like to help volunteer at Statesboro High on Wednesday or Thursday, visit the Feed the Boro page on Facebook to sign up.
Another way the community can help is to sponsor a meal for an individual or a family. For a contribution of $15, you can sponsor six meals, $25 for 10 meals, $100 for 40 meals and so forth. It costs only $2.50 per meal to feed our community on Thanksgiving. You can give through the Paypal link found on the Feed the Boro's Facebook page or mail a check made payable to Feed the Boro, 701 Baytree Lane, Statesboro, GA 30458.
"We want to especially thank Bi-Lo for stepping up this year as our presenting sponsor," Poe said. "Last year, they donated over 200 turkeys for Feed the Boro. This year they have increased their commitment to the event. Local Bi-Lo Manager Tod Marsh and his staff have been very engaged in the planning.
"Platinum-level sponsors include D&R Intensive Car Care, Homestar Financial, Statesboro First United Methodist Church and Davis Marketing. Without the presenting (and) platinum sponsors and all of our corporate and individual sponsors, this would not be possible."
With your help, this will be another great Thanksgiving for our community, providing many of our citizens with a warm, fulfilling meal, and more importantly, hope, love and fellowship.