Operation Turkey - EDC
In light of our Fall worship theme focused on Table fellowship and the gracious invitation of God to all of God’s children to join together feasting at God’s table, it seems appropriate that the November Every Dollar Counts offering would support an effort dedicated to feeding as many people as possible on a holiday where feasting at a table is the central focus – Thanksgiving.
For the Every Dollar Counts offering for the month of November to be designated to Operation Turkey, a nonprofit organization that coordinates volunteers and donations to serve over 40,000 Thanksgiving Day meals for those who would otherwise go without. Operation Turkey estimates they are able to feel 40 people per $100 donated.
On Thanksgiving Day in 2000, Richard Bagdonas enjoyed a delicious Thanksgiving meal with friends. Still feeling full from his dinner, he while on his way home that evening Bagdonas decided to give his leftovers away to an individual who was homeless. The individual to whom he gave his leftover meal was disabled, and as he drove away, Bagdonas witnessed the man’s friend, who was also homeless, help feed the man who was disabled. Moved by this experience, Bagdonas and his friend Brian Tolbert, began a small movement that turned into an organization that now mobilizes volunteers to continue the powerful gift Bagdonas experienced himself – feeding someone who was hungry on Thanksgiving day.
Operation Turkey expanded from Austin to Dallas in 2012, as well as to San Antonio, Lubbock, San Marcos, Houston, and other cities across the nation. In 2016, Operation Turkey served 40,000 meals with the help of over 20,000 volunteers.