Pomerantz family volunteers at Operation Turkey for tenth year in a row


Photo submitted by Pomerantz family

The Pomerantz family stands outside P.F. Chang’s on Thanksgiving day while volunteering at Operation Turkey.

Harshita Avirneni and Natalie Brink

They look across the room, see all the smiling people eating their food. Helping others have a happy Thanksgiving is something they strive to do every year, and this year marks a decade of service.

The Pomerantz family volunteered today at P.F. Chang’s from 8 a.m. to noon through the organization Operation Turkey. This the tenth year in a row the family has been volunteering at the Northwest location.

“We started doing Operation Turkey when I was about 5 because I saw a homeless man on the street, and I started crying because I wanted to give him my lunch,” sophomore Abby Pomerantz said. “That’s what made [my parents] look into Operation Turkey and that’s how we started.

At this event volunteers prepare, package and deliver food to the homeless and less fortunate. Operation Turkey hosts events both right before and on Thanksgiving Day. It operates in 21 different locations between seven states.

“I’ve learned to be grateful for what I have and appreciate having a family and being able to have a Thanksgiving meal without think about it,” Abby said. “It brings your family together on Thanksgiving morning.”

The first year the Pomerantz family delivered meals left a big impact on Abby according to her mother and Family and Consumer Science teacher Stacy Pomerantz. One family invited them into their home and Abby got to play with their children.

“When we left their home a short while later, [Abby] said, ‘We are going to do this forever,’” Stacy said. “Every year we think about going away Thanksgiving week and visiting our family in New York City, however we never do and we know it’s because of Operation Turkey.”

Abby remembers a time when she was volunteering the Thanksgiving she was in second grade and a homeless woman pulled her aside to thank her. Abby said that the woman was grateful that such a young person would volunteer to help others.

“It feels really inspiring because we’ve been doing it for so long,” Abby said. “It’s a natural thing that we do each year without thinking about it.”

Stacy Pomerantz said her family has met wonderful people through Operation Turkey in the 10 years they have volunteered.

“Some of these relationships we still have today,” Stacy Pomerantz said. “We have learned so much about human nature and the positive feelings and amazing energy you can get by giving a little bit of yourself to someone else.”