ROCKFORD (WREX) - The Rockford Rescue Mission serves an early turkey dinner for those in need.
The Rockford Rescue Mission hosted its annual community Thanksgiving banquet Wednesday afternoon. The meal was for the hungry, homeless and lonely people in the Rockford area.
The Rescue Mission says it hosts the dinner the day before Thanksgiving, because there are so many other organizations that offer free meals on the actual holiday.
"This year we are preparing for 500 guests and 75 volunteers including Mayor Morrissey, Rock Valley College's Baseball Team, and other local church and family groups. That's over 100 more meals than we served last year," stated Executive Director Sherry Pitney. "Many of the people have no family in the area. Some simply have fallen on hard times. No one should be alone on a holiday and we want to let them know that we care about them, to share God's love and show them there is hope. Often that starts with something as simple as a hot meal."
The Rockford Rescue Mission has seen an increase in the number of people who need their services this year, because of the ongoing economic difficulties.
"In the past five months the number of meals served is running almost 19 percent ahead of last year. There is no shortage of people in need, and we're committed to provide for each person coming to us for help," Pitney said.
The Rockford Rescue Mission is located at 715 West State Street.