Local organizations offer donation, volunteer opportunities for the holidays


Gary Billings, 66, Dekalb, sorts donated food into bags at The Salvation Army on 830 Grove Street in DeKalb Friday afternoon. They will be hosting a Thanksgiving food drive next Tuesday at 9 a.m.

By Thomas Verschelde

DeKalb County offers many opportunities to give or volunteer this holiday season.

From donating food to those less fortunate to volunteering at a soup kitchen, it is important to get involved and help out the community, said Samantha Hunt, secretary at Feed’em Soup,

Feed’em Soup offers a place for people in the community to donate food so everyone can have a special Thanksgiving, Hunt said. The main Feed’em Soup donation drop point is at 122 S. First Street.

One of the beneficiaries of the donated food is Bethesda Lutheran Communities, 1761 Woodgate Drive in Sycamore. It is an intermediate care facility that serves the needs of people with disabilities.

Patrisha Grajeda, program manager at Bethesda Lutheran Communities, said for many people staying at Bethesda, the Thanksgiving meal it serves is very important.

“Many of the people we serve don’t go home for the holidays,” Grajeda said. “Their staff and housemates are their family and we consider them family too. It is important that our residents are not by themselves on Thanksgiving. Knowing that they won’t be alone [but] surrounded by those who care is very exciting for them.”

DeKalb Mayor Kris Povlsen said the people of DeKalb need to be generous this holiday season.

“It is important that those of us that have a little more be generous and help out those that are less fortunate than ourselves,” Povlsen said. “I think we should all stop and reflect on how giving just a little bit can help the entire community have a great Thanksgiving.”