Turkey brigade helps locals
Published 9:11 pm Thursday, November 19, 2015
Rain didn’t squelch the early-morning start of the Turkey Brigade on Thursday.
Shortly after 6 a.m., volunteers and employees began trickling in to Rose & Womble’s office in Harbour View to bag up Thanksgiving dinners for 1,000 families across Hampton Roads. Dubbed the Turkey Brigade, the project has morphed into the Rose & Womble Foundation’s signature event during the past 23 years, said Ramona Rice, the real estate agency’s communications director.
Two tractor-trailers carrying turkeys and all the trimmings rumbled into the Harbour View office around 8 a.m. Volunteers from the Deltaville Market and Super-Valu, who helped provide the food, were also on hand to unload trucks and pack bags of groceries.
Email newsletter signup
Each family got a turkey, stuffing, bags of potatoes and apples, and canned peas and corn, Rice said.
The packed bags were distributed to the agency’s offices across Hampton Roads by noon Thursday, according to Rice. All afternoon, Realtors, staffers and community volunteers delivered the holiday meals to families who were referred by local social service agencies, she said.
“Employees love the feeling of being able to help someone,” said Rice. “Sometimes I am amazed by the people who are getting assistance. It’s not always someone you would expect. It makes you realize that you never know what life will throw you. We are blessed and humbled by the opportunity to do this.”
The foundation foots half the bill for the Turkey Brigade, Rice said. The rest is funded through employee donations and fundraisers held throughout the year.
Many Realtors automatically donate a portion of their proceeds from a home sale to the foundation, she said.
The Turkey Brigade provides a needed service. According to the most recent Feeding America Executive Study, more than one in seven Americans will have to use a food bank in 2015.