Play­ers as­sist vol­un­teers in serv­ing Thanks­giv­ing din­ner to 500 peo­ple at Hope Mis­sion

Edmonton Sun - - NEWS - Dy­lan Short [email protected]­ @dy­lan­short_

The Hope Mis­sion teamed up with the Ed­mon­ton Eski­mos to serve Thanks­giv­ing din­ner to the city’s home­less Fri­day.

An es­ti­mated 500 peo­ple crowded into the Hope Mis­sion, 9908 106 Ave., as din­ner was served over two seat­ings be­fore the long week­end.

Among the reg­u­lar vol­un­teers serv­ing up turkey, stuffing, cran­ber­ries and pota­toes was a group of pro-foot­ball play­ers.

“It’s al­ways great to give back, es­pe­cially this time of year with Thanks­giv­ing just around the cor­ner,” said of­fen­sive lines­man Matthew O’don­nell. “We’re all about the com­mu­nity and be­ing in­volved as much as pos­si­ble.”

Along­side din­ner, the mis­sion served cof­fee and dessert, with all the food be­ing do­nated through food banks and pri­vate do­na­tions.

Kate Halsey, spokes­woman for Hope Mis­sion, said the 90-year-old or­ga­ni­za­tion started out by giv­ing meals to the home­less.

She said it’s es­pe­cially im­por­tant to give back around the hol­i­days and hav­ing a lo­cal pro-sports team helped put a smile on their din­ner guests’ faces.

“Hol­i­days can be hard some­times, es­pe­cially if you don’t have fam­ily or you feel alone and maybe dis­con­nected from loved ones,” said Halsey.

“Hope Mis­sion of­fers a place where you can come and sit and rest and en­joy a meal, so if any­body is want­ing to come find hope this is a place to do it.”

With win­ter just around the cor­ner, Halsey said the Hope Mis­sion is look­ing to take in win­ter cloth­ing, es­pe­cially gloves, be­fore the deep cold sets in.

“The big thing in terms of do­na­tions, like I said, socks and un­der­wear are hard for us to keep on the shelves,” said Halsey. “There has been a sur­plus of re­quests for gloves, un­der­wear and socks, so those are the three that we’re re­ally in the need for.”

Ian Kucerak/post­media

Edna Rain with a Thanks­giv­ing din­ner served by vol­un­teers at Hope Mis­sion in Ed­mon­ton on Fri­day.

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