Community prepares 500 Thanksgiving meals for neighbors in need

ESTERO

On Thanksgiving morning, an Estero neighborhood comes together to provide 500 meals to those in need.

The Copperleaf community will serve them to the impoverished families who live in Bonita Springs, a few miles from the gates of this neighborhood, people who couldn’t just walk into the store and grab a turkey on this holiday. They are all clients of the Cafe of Life charity, which serves active, poor, mostly Hispanic families in the Bonita Springs area. 10% of them are homeless and almost all are described as “in transition” in their life, whether they are single mothers, people who have lost their jobs or migrant families.

The residents of Copperleaf have spent the past few days preparing meals for these families in their individual homes. On Thursday, these meals will be organized in the community clubhouse and taken to four Café de la Vie sites where they will be distributed to families. Over 80 people from the Copperleaf community volunteered to help cook, organize and transport meals. They say the chance to do something so convenient, rather than just write a check, has been its own wonderful reward.

“They are so grateful, and just real people who are happy to interact with us, to receive the food,” said Doreen Evans, chief organizer. “I think it’s the best experience of all. Everyone that’s gone said, ‘Well, that was what it was. Thank you. Thank you.’ So we receive more than we give. there is no doubt.

Evans started the initiative three years ago when she said she was looking for a meaningful way to spend Thanksgiving with her granddaughter. Word has spread throughout the neighborhood, and now 500 meals including 31 platters of sliced ​​turkey in gravy, 14 platters of mashed potatoes, 14 platters of stuffing, 40 pies, 500 hard-boiled eggs and much more will be served. Thursday.

“I hope what it is is a feeling of love, a feeling of sharing, a feeling of community, that we are local, we are not far from where these people live,” Evans said. . “I hope we share our love as well as our food.”

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