Food preparer Bill Barry of Utica wears a turkey hat at the Thanksgiving dinner. Photo by Michael Greenlar | Central Current

For this Thanksgiving holiday, local charities are doing their part to aid fellow Central New Yorkers facing challenging times.

As a way to support Syracuse residents, local organizations are offering free meals and assistance within various neighborhoods.

Rescue Mission Alliance

Rescue Mission Alliance continues to fulfill their annual holiday mission by preparing free in-person and delivered meals to individuals throughout the city.

The organization is projected to serve over 2,000 meals to clients in person for each holiday, as they have done in previous years.

To honor the tradition of making Thanksgiving a special time for all, Rescue Mission Alliance volunteers are directly serving guests to ensure they do not have to get on their feet while enjoying their meals.

All guests who visit for meals will be given breakfast and lunch at the Rescue Mission Alliance located at 155 Gifford St. For dinner, guests will be given a to-go bag with a prepared meal along with pastries.

On Oct. 18, Rescue Mission Alliance activated their holiday hotline for individuals requesting meals throughout the holiday season and to accommodate vulnerable communities in need of homebound meals.

“At this time anybody who calls can get meals and we deliver them on thanksgiving and Christmas morning,” said Braden Miles, volunteer service coordinator.

The organization has 80 drivers expected to deliver meals on Thanksgiving morning throughout Syracuse’s east, west and north side communities.

Miles said the organization has received 1,200 meal requests, with an expected increase of up to 1,600 before Thanksgiving day.

The organization continues to accept calls for individuals and families experiencing food insecurity. Anyone in need of assistance with holiday meals can call the hotline at (315) 701-3898.

At this time the organization is no longer in need of volunteers, but the Rescue Mission Alliance encourages additional ways for individuals to get involved with their holiday efforts, including volunteering, gifting someone in the community or donating items. More information can be found here.

National Grid’s Season of Giving with Brady Market

In partnership with Brady Market, volunteers from National Grid are working to supply Thanksgiving meal kits to vulnerable families and individuals experiencing food insecurity.

On Monday, volunteers assembled 180 meal kits provided by the Brady Market at 307 Gifford St.

The packaged items include mashed potatoes, whipped squash, corn, stuffing, and many other Thanksgiving essentials. The meal boxes are also expected to be delivered to residents in neighboring areas before Thanksgiving day.

“The generosity of our employees goes back many years, though this is our first year volunteering at Brady Market,” said Jared Paventi, National Grid strategic communications manager. “The 2022 Season of Giving takes on special meaning and significance given the economic challenges faced by our customers and others in this community this winter.”

As part of National Grid’s Season of Giving initiative, the energy company recently launched two new programs: the Hope & Warmth Energy Fund and Hearts Fighting Hunger. Both programs were established to address the needs of residents experiencing financial hardships.

National Grid gifted the Brady Market with $10,000 to go toward the establishment’s very own efforts.


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