Giving Back for Thanksgiving

Giving Back for Thanksgiving

Lauren Wildoner, Messenger Reporter & Artwork Coordinator

Normally, everyone spends their Thanksgiving with family, socializing and eating delicious food. They take a well-needed break and see family to celebrate the holiday. Others, like Parker Lyon, spend their Thanksgiving day volunteering for the local food kitchen. There, he helps deliver and distribute food to those in need so they can have a good Thanksgiving too. In his interview, he explained the process and how he enjoyed helping others.

Q: What was your favorite part about volunteering?

A: “The reactions. Everyone is always so thankful for our help and everything we do. It makes it completely worth it.”

Q: How long have you been volunteering?

A: “Two years!”

Parker: “I usually volunteer all Thanksgiving day and then go home to my own family and have dinner with them. That way I get to help other families while also seeing mine. I plan to do this for a long time; giving up one day to help others be able to celebrate this holiday is always so worth it.”

Q: What were the conditions at the soup kitchen? How were the people?

A: “The first time you volunteer at a soup kitchen or anywhere like that, it’s kind of shocking. You don’t really realize how much help people need or the conditions that people can be in. The people were so kind, they always are. They aren’t stuck up like people we’re used to coming in contact with. It just was amazing how thankful they were for every single effort they were giving.”

Q: How can others get involved in helping?

A: “You may not want to go to the soup kitchen and help in that way, but there are always ways to give something. Churches and local businesses sometimes take donations this time of year; clothes, food, toys, anything. Thanksgiving and Christmas are big times of the year when donations are most needed. Whatever you can give, your time, food, anything- every little bit helps.”

Parker also volunteers during his Christmas break in Hopkinsville. There are opportunities everywhere to volunteer and help less fortunate families celebrate holidays that you get the luxury of celebrating with your family. This year, help give other families something to be thankful for.