Brevard Gives Big Holiday Giving Showcases Community Compassion
When a community comes together to make a difference, magic happens.” So it is written across the flyer from the 10th Annual Space Coast Thanksgiving Basket Brigade. And so it was done by so many Brevard County residents this holiday season.
Our community has a rich tradition of strong charitable giving. Year after year, countless organizations and companies step up to rally and serve others across the Space Coast. Cheers to those who collected, delivered, managed, funded and shared — meals, blankets, toys and compassion. We are a better place thanks to these groups and so many more.
What happens when 2,000 volunteers get together the day before Thanksgiving? They pack and deliver over 3,300 baskets packed with all the trimmings for a Thanksgiving dinner to families in need.
What started 10 years ago with one family delivering meals to four other families has grown into this amazing community effort known as the Basket Brigade. More than half of the volunteers were children.
Pitching in were:
- A Brownies group who collected over 1,000 bags of marshmallow
- Viera High cheerleaders
- Satellite High students
- Multiple youth baseball teams
- Church of Viera's middle school program
- 75+ community and business sponsors
- Space Coast Area of Realtor, LGI, Northrop Grumman and Health First were title sponsors, feeding more than 100 families each. Northrop fed over 1,400.
Of the 3,346 baskets, about 850 were “In Transition” baskets full of non-perishable food items delivered to families living in hotels, shelters, tents, and trailer homes.
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Berkeley’s “Bundle-Them-Up” Blanket Drive
Many people drive by His Place Church in Melbourne on their daily commute to work or weekend outings to the downtown area, often on auto-pilot. But 11-year old Berkeley Wright, a fourth grader at Ocean Breeze Elementary, noticed a man sitting on the steps of His Place on a particularly cold winter night, shivering as he bundled up to stay warm. Upset at the thought of him and others spending the night outside in the elements, she was driven to help those like him.
This past Christmas season, she launched Berkeley’s “Bundle-Them-Up” Blanket Drive. With the help of local businesses serving as drop-off locations, Berkeley and her family handed out all the blankets on Christmas Day at The Daily Bread.
Machinists Shop For Kids
For the past 12 years, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers Local Lodge 2061 from Kennedy Space Center has worked with Brevard Family Partnership to provide Christmas for children in foster care and families in crisis throughout Brevard County.
Throughout the year, the Union hosts fundraisers funds through breakfasts, golf tournaments, and raffles to raise $15,000 to buy toys and clothes for Brevard’s children in crisis. The 2019 holiday season, the Machinists sponsored 400 children, their highest number ever!
Alpizar Law Turkey Give-Away
Alpizar Law hosted its 7th Annual Thanksgiving Turkey Giveaway at its Palm Bay office this November, giving away 700 turkeys to families in Brevard. Alpizar Law is committed to helping our community enjoy the holidays and was thrilled to be able to positively touch so many.
Serving Brevard as a personal injury law firm for over 40 years, the team that helps people in their time of need saw fit to show thankfulness and support of their community by giving back.
“We were truly blessed with the opportunity to help so many people this year and were humbled by the response of genuine thanks and gratitude expressed by so many people,” the team shared.
Ministry Toy Drive
The His Place Ministries Community Toy Drive, initiated in 2006, distributed toys to their biggest group yet, ensuring over 3,500 children received a holiday gift this past season. Toys are collected throughout November and early December and distributed about one week before Christmas. Each year, the number of children the toy drive help has grown.
It’s a community effort with volunteers get involved with setting up the toys by age and type and helping parents select toys for their children. Area businesses host collection boxes. Then, parents come into the His Place Ministries sanctuary to select a gift.
For more information, contact A Mother’s Touch Movers at 321-253-6040.
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