Just one week left to donate to #TurkeysForDURM, where 100% of the proceeds collected will go towards buying turkeys to be delivered to and distributed by the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina.
Why am I supporting something all the way in North Carolina, when I live in Las Vegas? Good question. This campaign was started by a good friend, Johnny Jones. Some time ago, Johnny, posted a message on Instagram, a call to action to buy 100 turkeys to donate to the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina, a pay-it-forward campaign. Without asking any questions, I put some cash in an envelope and sent it to Johnny. Shortly after, I saw the website, logo and facebook page that eventually developed from that instagram/tweet and decided I wanted to know more about what inspired such an endeavor, from what seemed like out of nowhere. So I gave Johnny a ring, and got a story that makes me so glad I didn’t hesitate to support his cause.
Johnny told me that on a couple of occasions, people had helped him and his family out, but the time he remembers the most clearly was the Thanksgiving of 1996. That year, a church organization had been helping his family out at different times throughout the year and that Thanksgiving, they gave his family a turkey.
Johnny: It was the best turkey I remember [mom] cooking. It was juicy. We ate off of it from Thursday to Monday. We made it stretch. We didn’t have anything but that meal. It left such an impression on me. We didn’t have to worry about what we were going to eat tomorrow. My Mom also had so much pride about the way it came out. I could never thank them, but I can pay it forward, and hopefully give someone that same type of feeling. It was years ago, but I remember like it was yesterday.
When I asked Johnny about why now? why 100 turkeys?
Johnny: I was talking with a guy who owns a non-profit and decided I wanted to be more philanthropic and make more change in my community. We were talking about doing something in the future, 10 people get 10 turkeys. I was feeling blessed and wanted to donate now, not the future. I was familiar with By Any Meals, a campaign started by Aristotle Torres, a music video director from NY and Hood Chef, to feed people in all 5 Burroughs [of New York]. They were young and decided to do something on their own. So I figured, why not do it this year. Even if I fall on my face, at least I had the courage to try.
Johnny did indeed try and has received a tremendous amount of unsolicited support.
Johnny: What’s been exciting, is the way people have made selfless donations, to make a memorable Thanksgiving for a lot of people.
A turkey might seem like a small thing to many of us, but it might just make someone’s Thanksgiving. Salute to Johnny, and his efforts, as well as everyone who contributed to his turkey drive or any other drive going on this holiday season. While I hope you support Johnny, what I hope even more is that you pay-it-forward to someone. You never know when a simple act of kindness can influence the life of another, let alone 100 families.