FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Thanksgiving: a time of gratitude and generosity, kindness and kinship.
Celebrated with feasts and family gatherings, and acknowledgements of appreciation for all we hold dear, the holiday season is a joyous occasion.
Families across the country are busy preparing plans, parties and plentiful plates for November’s festivities – but the opportunity to unite with our loved ones and give thanks is something many of us take for granted.
More than 6,000 local households may not have the chance to come together and enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving celebration this year, with so many underprivileged people unable to afford to feed their families.
Deeply passionate about helping those in need, New England Revolution defender DeJuan Jones is once again hoping to spread more kindness and help those less fortunate as part of his Thanksgiving tradition, raising money for another cause close to his heart: the annual Turkey Club Fundraiser with the Providence Rescue Mission.
Though the Revolution’s 2023 MLS season has come to an end, the left back will be spending the first weeks of his offseason playing his part for the local community. Having raised more than $16,000 for families and children in September’s ‘Back to School with the Revs’ campaign, the United States Men’s National Team star is relishing the chance to embark on another annual charity drive, and is calling upon the New England family to once again show their love and compassion to those who need it most this Thanksgiving.
Just $40 in donations provides a family of four with a Holiday food box, containing a full Thanksgiving meal with a 15-pound turkey and all the fixings, plus food for the following days. After smashing his September fundraising target, Jones and several of his teammates are hoping to hit $20,000 this month with his latest efforts to help 500 families, as he explains.
“It’s an awesome initiative,” he said. “I was up there [last week] with a few teammates and our Chaplain. It’s good to be there to see it in person. Twice a week, they hand out food boxes for families in need. I was able to help out by handing out some boxes, and to see the joy on those families’ faces is amazing. To really help someone, to feed them, is really helpful.
“I was told we already have $7,000, so that’s really positive, and I’m really thankful to everyone who has been supporting it. $40 can feed a family of four – not just for a Thanksgiving meal but for the following week. Another thing they stress is that they want to be able to give families food so they can have Thanksgiving dinner under their own roof, and really make it special in that way.
“For me, it’s always been important to use my platform as an athlete to help others, and to do things for God’s kingdom, to help people. That’s what it’s all about – helping your neighbor, loving your neighbor as ourselves. To be able to put my name on it and help these people out – making sure they’re fed and making sure they get this special time with their family – is really awesome.
“It’s nice to have teammates that are willing to help. Providence Rescue Mission has done a really good job. We’re happy to partner with them again and help make this holiday season special for these families.”
This Thanksgiving, please consider teaming up with DeJuan, his teammates and the Providence Rescue Mission in helping those in need to fully celebrate and enjoy the holiday season with their families.
Thousands of local people are expected to request help with food boxes again this year, and any donation towards the cause is greatly appreciated.