CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Cars lined the parking lot of the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center this afternoon, waiting to get a free Thanksgiving turkey at the We Code, Too turkey giveaway.
“This event was slated to begin at 2:30 p.m. and we had people here as early as 12 o’clock,” said Wes Bellamy, who’s helped organize the giveaway for the past seven years.
200 turkeys were given away in a matter of just over 30 minutes. Bellamy wasn’t surprised they went as quickly as they did.
“The calls we’ve received, in terms of people reaching out and asking if we would be doing it was off the charts,” Bellamy said.
He said volunteers and community partners answered that call. All of the turkeys were bought with donations. Winter coats were also available on-site for anyone in need.
Long lines to get free food have become a reality of the COVID-19 pandemic. Bellamy said, however, the turkey drive is a testament to the Charlottesville community’s desire to help their neighbor.
“It’s unfortunate that we see another year goes by in which we see such a great demand,” Bellamy said. “However, I am incredibly proud of this community as always, for stepping up to the plate, ensuring that they donate, and making sure that these families will have a turkey and a coat for this Thanksgiving and this winter holiday.”