A group of volunteers woke up bright and early Thanksgiving morning to deliver food to struggling families across Southwest Florida.
Arthur Nicoletti, manager of the group Feeding the 5000 says the group has been around and feeding families for years.
“It started about 17 years ago, and it was just a local church thing and people came for Thanksgiving and then they realized some of the people couldn’t make it so they sent the food back out to them,” he said.
This year, he helps coordinate more than 700 volunteers who prepared more than 4,000 meals for people.
“I think this is probably the best example of the joy of feeding others,” said volunteer Barbara Tvedt.
By comparison, they say that 15 years ago, they were preparing 200 meals per year. Since 2007, they have prepared a total of 65,000 meals for those in need in Southwest Florida.
“Some of them are families just having a tough time. The best stories we get are from people who deliver.”
And in her 17th year delivering food for families, Tvedt helped Feeding the 5000 reach their 70,000th meal mark.
“The joy of helping others is something we need to hold onto in this world,” Nicoletti said.