NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Volunteers in the Elm City are stepping up to provide food and cheer to those in need this Thanksgiving.
The Interfaith Volunteer Caregivers began their “Thanksgiving For All” program around 30 years ago to offer holiday dinners for seniors. They eventually developed a partnership with the Downtown Evening Soup Kitchen to expand the meals to those in poverty as well.
“We started out cooking 75 turkey dinners in a church basement and we’ve really mushroomed out to serving people all over New Haven County,” said Jane Ferrall, director of Interfaith Volunteer Caregivers of Greater New Haven.
The meals are prepared by Yale Hospitality, Christopher Martins Restaurant and the New Haven Athletic Club. Included in each package is a card made by students in the city’s public school system.
Organizers planned to serve 1,200 meals after scaling back last year.
George Arline is one of the dozens of people who received a meal today. He is having a hard time making ends meet amid the pandemic and rising inflation. But he’s surviving with social security, food stamps and organizations like the soup kitchen.
“A lot of people lost their jobs and some people lost their homes, and they’ve got to resort to these types of places here to survive,” Arline said. “This place is a blessing, you know, it’s not only feeding me, it’s feeding a lot of other people that are in need as well.”