thanks were given

About 400 plates of hot food served dur­ing an­nual tra­di­tion at Bis­sell Cen­tre

Edmonton Sun - - NEWS - JA­SON her­ring @ja­sonfher­ring

In­ner-city Ed­mon­to­ni­ans ex­pe­ri­enc­ing home­less­ness or poverty had a chance to share a warm hol­i­day lunch Thurs­day af­ter­noon, as the Bis­sell Cen­tre con­tin­ued its decades-long tra­di­tion of host­ing a Thanks­giv­ing meal for its pa­trons.

In to­tal, the non-profit served about 400 plates of food — tur­ducken, pota­toes, stuff­ing and cran­berry sauce were on the menu — to mem­bers of its com­mu­nity this year.

“It’s an op­por­tu­nity for all of us to get to­gether and spend some time to­gether with some mu­sic and some good food,” said Amanda Power, the Bis­sell Cen­tre’s man­ager of vol­un­teer ser­vices and events.

Power says events like this wouldn’t be pos­si­ble with­out do­na­tions from busi­nesses and other non-prof­its. Much of the food was pro­vided by the Ed­mon­ton Food Bank, as well as busi­nesses in­clud­ing Costco and Save On Foods.

Also vi­tal to the event were the team of close to 20 vol­un­teers, in­clud­ing one of the cen­tre’s long­est-serv­ing vol­un­teers, help­ing with ev­ery­thing from serv­ing food to daily Bis­sell tasks like man­ning the laun­dry machines.

Au­gust Guil­laume, a vol­un­teer for more than a decade, said hol­i­day meals are among the most spe­cial days for the cen­tre each year but said the is­sue of poverty in Ed­mon­ton should be on the radar year­round.

“It’s re­ward­ing be­cause you can see what the is­sues are,” Guil­laume said. “There are re­ally peo­ple here with friend­ships who want to be a part of some­thing.”

David Bloom/postmedia

Din­ners are pre­pared in the Bis­sell Cen­tre Thurs­day dur­ing a Thanks­giv­ing event for the dis­ad­vantged.

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