It was a Thanksgiving meal unlike any other as the pandemic forced the Salvation Army of Santa Maria to cancel its traditional dinner. Instead, the nonprofit passed out individual meals for those in need.
"This year we had to rethink what we were going to do," says volunteer chef Ron Lovell. "Initially we were just going to cancel it, but people still need to eat."
Boxes of food and clothes were handed out to people lining up outside and drivers pulling through the parking lot.
The Salvation Army raised the money for the meals on social media. In total, the community pitched in enough to feed about 1,200 people.
"We’re an essential business. Every single day the Salvation Army takes care of those people who need it most in our community," says Lovell.
Donations are always accepted, especially now that more people are in need during the pandemic.