Thanksgiving Heroes Bring the Holiday Feast
By Dianne Anderson
Everyone is talking turkey this week, especially how easy it is to drop $150 on the big feast.
This week, Community Action Partnership (CAP) is making the day a little lighter on the family budget by collaborating with dozens of local volunteers, who are out boxing up good eats for their great turkey giveaway.
All the fixings ready to go.
“We’re going to have 1,000 turkeys, 1,000 boxes of food, and a resource fair,” said Terrance Stone, founder and CEO of Young Visionaries Youth Leadership Academy.
Stone, who has partnered with the CAP distribution for the second year, said that everyone who can afford to do so are welcome to swing by and drop off more food to help out the community. Those in need are welcome to come and receive. There is also a resource fair with dozens of vendors on site.
“Community Action Partnership is donating [the food]. Between the turkeys, their space, the manpower, donations and volunteers are [valued at] over $36,000 of this donation to the event,” Stone said.
And, there is no such thing as too much turkey.
He said often good people stop by to just to say hi, share in the moment, and give back to the community food stock each year.
“We get that too. We won’t turn any turkey away – unless it’s a jive turkey,” he laughs.
Like prior years, he anticipates that there won’t be any leftover turkeys from the 1,000 boxes packed up to go to a deserving home for the holidays. Last year over 3,000 people in need showed up for the event.
“We gave out 1,000 and we still had almost 100 people in line that we had to refer them to different events that we know was going on the community,” he said.
On November 17, many nonprofit vendors will be tabling important information for families and the at-risk community. Stone will also be distributing information about his ongoing job training resources. The first come, first serve event will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at 696 Tippecanoe Ave. in San Bernardino.
Recently, he pulled down $1 million for local workforce development in forklift and security training from the Cal VIP (violence intervention program), as well $200,000 for street outreach from the city of San Bernardino VIP program.
On Saturday, November 17, across town, the community is invited out for a Share and Care Day compliments of St. Paul AME Church from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. located at 1355 W. 21st Street in San Bernardino. The event features free food, health resources, a variety of vendors and a job fair.
Jonia Williamson, event coordinator, said the day will start off in remembrance of Patricia Singleton, who recently died from breast cancer as she was working to pull the job fair together for the community.
“Before we begin the festivities, I’ve asked people to write down the names of people who succumbed to cancer on pink balloons and we will release them at the beginning of the program. It’s to honor Trish,” she said.
From there, the community is invited to access their many participating nonprofit, social service and health vendors, and free screening for glucose and blood pressure.
“I want to make sure they don’t miss out on the other resources,” she said. “Health Options will be there to give advice on the best HMO to take for people 65 and over.”
Over the past year, she is hearing more complaints that people do not understand how health insurance has changed under the Trump Administration. Some insurance companies are selling their products cheaper, but they are not informing the clients that the insurance doesn’t accept people with pre-existing conditions.
“You might have a child with asthma or leukemia or cancer – they won’t be covered, but they don’t tell them that until they’re ready to use it,” she said.
Thomas Osbourne, who is working with Williamson, said their 10th annual Share and Care isn’t feeding cooked meals on site this year, but the resource fair is followed by distribution of bags of food with chicken and the fixings to carry them past the holidays. Last year, the church gave about 300 bags at their event.
They are also hosting free medical supplies, screenings, and the job fair with confirmed employment agencies.
Vendors will be tabling information, but he said they want the community to learn about the resources and job fair before the food distribution so they don’t miss out on any opportunities.
“Check out the other people first, and see about other services available,” he said. “A job fair, and a health fair, and community services, I’m sure there’s something for everybody.”