The Coachella Valley Rescue Mission served thousands of meals to those in need for the Thanksgiving holiday.
“It might be their first hot meal in weeks...maybe months. Especially now with COVID,” said Kristen Crawford, Kitchen Assistant, CVRM.
Because of the pandemic, volunteers moved the meals outside under open-air tents.
“We are just filled with gratitude that we are able to serve them,” added Crawford.
Many volunteers arrived in the kitchens at 2 a.m. to prepare for the day. Breakfast was served 6-11 a.m. and dinner was served 2-6 p.m.
“It means a lot. This is my home,” said Joaquin Valdez, client, CVRM. “Last winter was really difficult. I remember last Thanksgiving was spent in the rain.”
Thanksgiving brings hundreds of new faces to the mission each year, allowing them to welcome people into their recovery programs.