Champaign, Ill. (WCIA) — Thanksgiving is not only about giving thanks at The Daily Bread Soup Kitchen. It is also about giving back. Today, volunteers at the kitchen served a holiday meal to hundreds of people in need.
Those people flowed in for a Thanksgiving celebration when the soup kitchen opened their doors at 10a.m.
“It’s a special time, and we try to make guests feel very welcomed and very special this time of year because we know how important it is to have some place to come, some place warm, some place with a good meal to eat and sit down,” says volunteer Charlie Brown.
All the desserts, trimmings, and over 20 turkeys were donated from different restaurants and catering businesses in the community. More than 20 volunteers set-up and serve in a cafeteria style.
However, they say its more than food. It is also about family.
“I think we all like to be with friends and family for holidays, and I think our guests are kind of family to each other—a lot of them,” says volunteer Sheryl Scherschligt . “And, so they get together and have a nice meal.”
This year, they served a “nice meal” to over 300 people.
It is a Thanksgiving tradition The Daily Bread started almost 10 years ago in 2010. People that go for meals every year say they really rely on this to get in the holiday spirit.
“It’s such a blessing to have a place to where it’s kind of a common ground where many, many different walks of life come together, and it’s just for a meal,” says soup kitchen goer Dan Denton.
Dan Denton goes for a Thanksgiving meal every year. He says he was once homeless, but things have turned around for him. Now, he makes sure anyone who want to eat can enjoy.
“[I] pick people up and bring them here [and] take them home,” says Denton”
He drives people who struggle to find transportation to and from The Daily Bread.
“Just spending time with other people,” says Denton. “Trying to do what I can on a daily basis to help these people out, to be part of the solution, and make someone’s else life just a little better so when a holiday comes they have a warm meal, that they have a good, warm heart.”