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“Turkeys from Heaven” seeks donations to feed their goal of 2,000 families in need

This is the projects 23rd year.
Published: Dec. 2, 2020 at 5:15 PM CST
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DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - With the goal of preparing 2,000 meals for families in need this year, Turkeys from Heaven needs extra help this holiday season.

For 23 years the project has encouraged the community to come together to make a difference.

“A group of friends got together and wanted to do something for other people for Christmas and it’s just grown to other friends helping and now most of the people that help, I don’t even know,” Rebecca Marsella, Co-founder, said. “We’ve tried to be really careful to keep it open to anyone in the community who wants to help, this isn’t sponsored by a specific organization this is literally a community effort.”

On Wednesday, December 23rd Christmas meals will be loaded by volunteers for delivery at the Wiregrass Museum of Art (WMA), then be on their way to those in need this holiday season.

“The biggest need that we have right now is actually people to go purchase the turkeys,” Marsella said.

Due to COVID-19, rather than cooking the turkeys themselves they are purchasing smoked turkeys. Marsella said this creates about a $5 increase for each turkey which adds about $10,000 dollars more to the overall cost.

“If everybody that’s listening to this bought one turkey, we’d be done, and that would be such a blessing to so many people because in addition to the turkeys we also have all the other groceries to purchase,” Marsella said. “So, it is a big operation, but yet its small because each person can make such a difference.”

Turkeys can be purchased for this project at any Dothan Piggly Wiggly for about $22 dollars each. They can be left there to be delivered to WMA the morning of December 23rd.

“A meal may not seem like that big of a deal to a lot of us, but to a lot of these families that we take it to, this is their Christmas gift,” Marsella said. “So if we all remember that and remember what an impact it has, and just, giving to others always makes me feel better. I think I get a lot more out of it than the person that eats the turkey. It just puts it all in perspective and makes us realize how blessed we are.”

Other changes include preparing green bean casseroles off site. Groceries and pans will be provided, you can pick them up on December 22nd and return them the following morning.

“I just hope that this year, having such a different looking holiday season, we can prove that we still are a community that wants to come together and help,” Marsella said.

Volunteers can go to the WMA between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. to pick up meals to deliver. Directions will be provided.

The project feeds families in need within a 60 mile radius.

Turkeys from Heaven will continue accepting donations until they reach their goal. It is crucial for the organization to know who is bringing what and when you can help so everything will be in order.

You can help by donating turkeys, dessert, money, or time. To make a donation, click here.

Families names come from local agencies and organizations like the Salvation Army, The House of Ruth, the Rescue Mission, DHR, Hospice, Red Cross, United Way and local churches.

If you are interested in volunteering contact Rebecca Marsella at 334-797-9376 or mrmarsella@gmail.com. If you would like to assist in the turkeys thawing contact Harry Hall at 334-797-9378 or harry@farmerprice.com.

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