Community Support Helps Those in Need

Ten days ago, Newscenter 11 brought you the story about the need LOVE's Kitchen still had for Thanksgiving. On Thanksgiving, LOVE's Kitchen had everything it needed to provide a meal for those who may not have one otherwise. Because of the community's support, several hundred people enjoyed a traditional Thanksgiving meal.

Fannie Johnson, executive director of LOVE's Kitchen, tells us, "The community stepped up great. We've got a great meal in there. We've got all the traditional stuff everybody's used to. We've got turkey dressing, cranberry sauce, all kind of cakes, macaroni and cheese, sweet potatoes, the turkeys are smoked with extra flavor this year; I mean everything's wonderful. The community came through. They didn't want anybody hungry. They wanted to be thankful and for everybody else to have something to be thankful for."

Johnson is also thankful for the volunteers that give of their time to make the Thanksgiving meal happen for so many, but it's not just the ones who volunteer on Thanksgiving that make it possible.

"The 20 or 30 that we've got is working out wonderful. Everything's moving smooth, and a lot of the volunteers that came before today is what made today so easy, and then we have some volunteers coming tomorrow to kind of help us do that end of year straighten up and clean up," says Johnson.

One of those volunteers has been coming for the last several years and brings his entire family with him. For them, it is simply a way to help make the day brighter for others.

Willis Melancon, who has been volunteering at LOVE's Kitchen for the last five or six years, explains why he does it, "It just gives us a sense of giving back to the community, and we feel so thankful for my whole family being here and all the things that we have. We just want to help those that maybe aren't having it as good a time as a lot of other people. We just want to see if we can't help them have a good day."

The work of all the volunteers is spelled out in front of LOVE's Kitchen, which stands for Lauderdale Outreach Volunteer Effort.