MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) – As many across the country celebrate Thanksgiving, a local organization is distributing meals to those in need.
Feed The Streets Alabama is a nonprofit organization that held its 5th annual Thanksgiving event at Public Safety Memorial Park on Thursday afternoon.
Filled with music, face painting and a bouncy house, volunteers handed out foods like macaroni and cheese, collards and lemon pepper-flavored turkey.
Feed The Streets Alabama CEO Travis Poellenitz says his journey and battle with COVID-19 motivates him to continue hosting the event.
“In 2020, COVID took over my job. I worked in the food industry. And a lot of people got laid off. And I was one of those people, unfortunate people, who lost their jobs, defaulted on their car payments, paid rent late, and ended up living off their car,” Pollenitz said. “Now I’m in different shoes, maybe I need a hot meal or need to find a place to take refuge.”
Many Pöllenitz contemporaries volunteered to help hand out the food. They say it’s the community that motivates them.
“I like helping people you know,” said Natalia Montgomery, a volunteer. “It’s hard these days because of the pandemic and things like that and a lot of people don’t have homes.”
“I just want to help the community like I always do,” Nakiah Montgomery said, “and I just came out and you know, I’m having a good time showing people who I am.”
Feed The Streets co-founder Alexander Anderson has a message from his grandmother that is very dear to him.
“My grandma always told me that to get a blessing, you have to give a blessing,” Anderson said. “What we do is good as long as we can feed one person.”
Poellenitz says he’s grateful for the opportunity to bless others.
“I’m grateful to be a blessing to be a blessing,” Pöllenitz said. “And for taking the time to come here and offer hot meals, I’m grateful for that because I know many people who wish they could be in my situation to even serve their communities around the world . I am grateful for being able to offer hot meals to my congregation. So we will not only smile, but also have a full stomach.”
Feed The Streets Alabama plans to be right back at Public Safety Memorial Park for next year’s Thanksgiving.
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