Salvation Army delivers food to the needy this Thanksgiving

Posted November 23, 2017 5:45 p.m. EST
Updated November 23, 2017 5:49 p.m. EST

While many local non-profit agencies prepared Thanksgiving meals for families in need, the Salvation Army of Wake County took a different approach this year. The group's volunteers prepared and delivered over 500 meals to hungry Triangle residents on Thursday.

The agency said it took this approach because many needy people don't have permanent housing and are living in motels. So the Salvation Army volunteers said they want to meet residents where they are.

"We are trying to reach a bunch of those families that are living from hotel to hotel," said Maj. Stephen Long, the Salvation Army area commander.

Officials at the non-profit said they prepared and delivered meals to 1,000 needy residents. Long said the effort is critical -- and necessary -- because the affordable housing crisis now impacts more than 500,000 North Carolina families

"We have a lot of families that can't get enough money to put a down payment on (a home) because they are living week-to-week in a hotel and those are the kids we are just trying to reach out to and help," he said.

The volunteers visited six different extended stay hotels, including the Wake Inn or Knights Inn. Candice Staples is a first-time volunteer and said seeing families in need made her especially willing to volunteer her time.

"There's people out there suffering or actually going through struggles in life," she said. "It definitely touches your heart and makes you more grateful for the things that you have."

Long said his agency is delivering food and working to help those in need of a helping hand.

"We are bringing a lot of hope (and) a lot of help," he said. "And just a spirit of love and Thanksgiving."