Avera McKennan is carrying on a tradition they started 3 years ago called the Thanksgiving Harvest of Hope. Their hope is that no family will go without a thanksgiving dinner. What they are providing goes beyond a meal; it provides family time in the privacy of their own home.
The women in Avera McKennan's Health Information Department took a quick break from their paper work to pack up the food they bought for this year's Harvest of Hope. It's a project Avera McKennan started 3 years ago with the Salvation Army to provide all the stuff families-in-need, need to make a Thanksgiving dinner at home. Of course it includes a certificate to get a free turkey or ham at Hy-Vee.
Kim Steever in Health Information at Avera McKennan says, "I think we saw a need in the community especially with the economy the way it's been in the last few years. We are all a paycheck away form being in the same spot."
Each gift box costs around $55 and organizers say doing things like this, for others, goes back to their gospel roots.
Volunteer Services Director Jennifer Grossman heads up the project. She says, "That's probably the biggest thing here at Avera McKennan is our mission. Our ministry to give back to each other, the community. It's also a way to get together as far as departments to bond that unity and give back to the community."
The Health Information Department filled 8 boxes of fixin's for Thanksgiving plus staples to feed 4 families.
Kim Steever says, "It's almost an overwhelming feeling. You don't expect that much because everybody is pinching and saving right now so it's overwhelming when we started adding everything up and it totaled 8 boxes."
90 departments within the hospital, plus the McGreevy clinics, Avera Behavioral Health and the Avera McKennan Fitness Center all chipped in to buy, shop and pack an estimated 300 gift boxes. Meaning 300 families will privately have something very special to be thankful for this Thanksgiving holiday.
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