DENVER -- Just a few days from Thanksgiving, and a local charity is making sure thousands of people in Denver will have a big turkey dinner to serve.
“There's a dramatic need for food in our community,” said L.J. Harker, grants coordinator for the Epworth Foundation.
Harker said 1 in 4 people in Denver is food insecure, meaning they don’t know where their next meal will come from. But even in hard times, there’s always something to be thankful for.
“People are making the choice between food or paying rent, food or getting medication we are trying to fill that gap. We don’t want to turn anyone away,” Harker said.
Saturday morning in the heart of Denver’s Whittier neighborhood, the Epworth Foundation and more than 1,000 volunteers handed out and delivered 5,000 boxes of food.
“Today is the 13th annual Denver Feed a Family Thanksgiving distribution that we hold in honor of Daddy Bruce Randolph. We’ve been here making boxes, unloading trucks, stuffing the boxes full of food,” Harker said.
“Its almost everything I need to make my turkey dinner so we can actually have Thanksgiving dinner,” said Leslie Cordova, a struggling mother of five.
Cordova volunteers and benefits from the food box.
“Pretty hard when you are having to decide between paying the electric bill or having Thanksgiving dinner,” she said.
But even she admits, the Feed a Family event is much more than a meal.
“Just to have something cooked up for my kids and to celebrate that we are here everyday and that we are striving to be better is everything in the world,” she said.
It’s a celebration of community, a giving of thanks and a tradition the community relies on.
“The fact that you can actually be selfless is what its about,” volunteer Lindell Williams said.
The Whittier neighborhood has recently lost four food banks because of gentrification so the need here is greater than ever.
About 500 people who requested to receive a food box didn’t get one. The foundation said it is going to try to fill those requests before Thanksgiving.
To donate or volunteer visit the Epworth Foundation's website.