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Giving in the Season of Gratitude

Giving in the Season of Gratitude. Darlyn Tucker, Captain in the Salvation Army.
Giving in the Season of Gratitude. Darlyn Tucker, Captain in the Salvation Army.(Valeria Fugate)
Published: Nov. 25, 2021 at 7:46 PM CST
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CHEYENNE, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - Thanksgiving is a day where we stuff our faces with great food and celebrate all that we have with family.

But not everyone has the same celebration. So this year, let’s remember all of the things that really matter to us.

Thanksgiving is a special day when we connect with our family and loved ones.

Organizations like these remind us of our impact in the community and how we can look after one another on this day, in this season of giving.

Today was the first day since the pandemic that the Salvation Army served the community a Thanksgiving meal in person.

Their mission is to make sure everyone feels seen, gets fed and has a place to go where there is a sense of warmth and belonging.

Holidays can be hard when you don’t have family or loved ones around, but it’s especially hard for the homeless, and after the last two years, everyone is glad to be able to re-connect in person over a nice meal.

“We want to make sure that everyone has that opportunity to know that they have a family outside of blood relative,s and that they are not alone. We want people to be heard, seen, and loved,” said Crystal Smoak, Captain in the Salvation Army.

The organization has prepped to serve 400 in-house meals on Thursday and shipping out over 100 warm meals boxes for the elderly or disabled.

Seventy volunteers showed up to help, from regular citizens, Military members and Church members of the Latter-Day Saints to serve food.

”Being able to come here and enjoy a nice meal with family and friends, and with the volunteers who come and help us serve. Just to be able to give back to our community its such a blessing and a wonderful feeling,” said Audrey Apodaca, Social Services Director of the Salvation Army.

At the Wyoming Coalition for the Homeless, the day-shelter had food brought in by volunteers, board members, and the sleeping bag crew.

”I dont want anybody to be out in the cold. There’s no reason for them to have to be out in the cold. There’s no reason for them to have to miss a meal. If that’s something we can provide then, we will gladly, gladly provide that,” said Darlyn Tucker, Executive Director of the Wyoming Coalition for the Homeless.

They will be serving about 40 people Thursday.

Jeffrey Cukas at the Comea Shelter says they expect more than 60 homeless folks to come in and the Volunteers of America will be serving them.

" It’s a chance to give people a decent meal where they may not get one, if they’re stuck out on the street or in a motel. They can come here...It gives me a chance to serve the community to help them. It’s a labor of love,” said Cukas.

Organizations like these remind us of not only the spirit of the season. But on this particular day, we are grateful for all the things that matter.

For more information on giving or volunteering, go to the Salvation Army, Comea Shelter, and the Wyoming Coalition for the Homeless.

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