Twin Cities volunteers spend Thanksgiving feeding people at encampments as pandemic drives up need

Workers with Involve MN spend their Thanksgiving handing out meals to those in need at homeless encampments in the Twin Cities. (FOX 9)

There's always a need to feed the hungry but the need is especially great this year on this Thanksgiving. Involve MN tells us they’re handing out 1,000 meals between Minneapolis and St. Paul but their work just isn’t on the holiday, it’s every day.

It can take hours to prep one Thanksgiving meal. But when you’re making 1,000 holiday meals, it’s a whole new level.

"Unfortunately, some places are not available that were originally going to be available to serve meals," explained Involve MN Executive Director Melanie Snyder, "so we’re trying to compensate."

Snyder and her team at Involve MN are on the streets of St. Paul and Minneapolis on Thanksgiving, feeding those who need it most.

"They’re just like us, everyone who is living in these encampments," said Snyder. "They deserve the same blessings, love, and attention, just like we do."

There’s not an encampment the team won’t go to, knowing those experiencing homelessness are facing new challenges daily -- and COVID-19 hasn’t made things any easier.

"People are struggling," explained Snyder. “Jobs are definitely an issue the cold weather is settling in so that’s definitely become a huge issue too."

That’s why the team is out here five days a week, knowing it’s not just the holidays when the need is high. Their work at encampments doesn’t go unnoticed.

"They do this every day they do this out of the kindness of their heart," said James Posey.

"It means a lot it means a lot because we need to know people care," added Jeremy Benton.