This Thanksgiving season, Hope for the Inner City is thankful for 32 years of Turkey for Two. The tradition is a fusion of relief and community empowerment that makes a meal possible for Hope community members who otherwise can’t afford all the trappings of Thanksgiving.
How Turkey for Two Works
The buy one, give one program allows donors to purchase a turkey through Hope and donate the second to community members who applied as recipients of Turkey for Two.
Neighbors also take home other Thanksgiving necessities including packaged and canned sides such as mashed potatoes, green beans, and cranberry sauce. Some wintry produce such as greens, cabbage, and onions are also provided to round-out a nutritious and traditional Thanksgiving meal.
After families sign-in to receive their turkey and goods, they have an opportunity to talk with vendors about various topics like nutrition and urban farming. Meanwhile, brunch is served for senior citizens and volunteers talk and pray with guests.
The Mission of Turkey for Two
Turkey for Two began as a way to help families in the neighborhood enjoy a Thanksgiving meal. In the past few years, the event has become as much a development tool as it is mercy ministry. Hope employees and volunteers use Turkey for Two as an opportunity to fulfill our mission: to engage, invest in, and empower our neighbors to bring economic stability to their community for the glory of God, beginning with East Chattanooga. More than a free turkey, this annual event:
- Restores dignity by making Thanksgiving possible for many families
- Serves senior citizens, brunch-style
- Delivers meals to those who can’t come
- Polls individuals to improve Hope’s community development
- Gives volunteers the opportunity to pray and talk with Hope neighbors
For Volunteers, Turkey for Two is Just as Gratifying
Community Development Director Tory Worley recalls watching several middle school boys volunteer at last year’s Turkey for Two. He said he watched them carry goods to the car of a lady who had asked for help. “You could tell the simple task of carrying something from one place to another was fulfilling for those boys. It was great to see everyone participating, everyone feeling thankful,” Tory said.
Mark Miller, a Youth Pastor at Community Baptist Church in Chattanooga, TN, said of Turkey for Two that, “It has become a yearly youth retreat for our church, along with two other churches we’ve invited to come up from Georgia and assist. Spending time in the community has opened our eyes to other ways we can engage and be active in the area. Last year, for example, we hosted a kickball tournament in the neighborhood following Turkey for Two, and several kids from the neighborhood joined in to participate.”
Give Thanks with Us
Volunteers are an essential part of Turkey for Two. We need people to show up, to visit with our neighbors, to talk to them, to listen to them, and to pray with them. If you’re interested in helping this year, we can find a way to use your unique gifts to the glory of God.
To sign up, email Community Development Director Tory Worley at email@example.com.
This year’s Turkey for Two is scheduled for November 17th from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. We ask that volunteers help from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.