WINDSOR, ONT -- Windsor’s local charities are stepping up for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend to make sure that those in need will have hearty meals.

Outreach organizations were busy Friday prepping meals, packaging food items and delivering to homes, shelters, and private residences.

In addition, a “drive-through” pick-up was organized by the Unemployed Help Centre (UHC) at their headquarters Friday.

The lineup was long, but worth the wait. Along with fresh fruit and vegetables, each holiday care package contained a free turkey.

C.E.O. of UHC, June Muir, and the University of Windsor’s Men’s Hockey team, spent the day packaging and handing out the food.

“So today we have the Lancers hockey team from the University of Windsor along with their coach, assistant coach – they wanted to come out and help,” said Muir. “They wanted to give out turkeys.”

In addition, Sarah Pimperton, head of the local organization “Helping Hearts With Hands” and the group “Angels For The Homeless,” were busy making meals for the less fortunate who live in a Tent City, in Windsor’s west end.

Dozens of the city’s homeless are situated in area – have little or no means to prepare nourishment on a daily basis – let alone – a Thanksgiving Day meal.

“This is called the cut. It’s a homeless tent city down here in Windsor,” said Pimperton. “We come down here on a regular basis and sure the needs are met as best we can, meaning blankets, sleeping bags, tents, and food.”

The Downtown Mission is also in the food planning and preparation mode, anticipating a larger than usual demand for meals this holiday weekend – in part due to the economic strain the Covid-19 pandemic has placed on the community.