Ensuring a meal for everyone this Thanksgiving

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BRICK TOWNSHIP — Thanksgiving is traditionally a time for family. But for those who don’t have a full table this holiday season, Susan Hermida and The Church of Epiphany are making sure residents still have a reason to be thankful.

“[We] get the whole community together as team to try to help these people that are alone for the holiday,” said Mrs. Hermida, a volunteer at the church. “It feels good that so many people want to help everyone else.” Last year, the annual church Thanksgiving dinner provided 1,000 meals to residents in Brick Township and throughout Ocean County.

Mrs. Hermida took over the Thanksgiving dinner 17 years ago and in that time, has expanded the event from a church get-together to a county-wide meal delivery program. The idea began while she was working with seniors at Leisure Village.

“I was working there on Thanksgiving one time my mom made meals for some of the people that I knew were alone so then when I took over at the church I said, ‘Let’s see if we can do Meals on Wheels,’” Mrs. Hermida said.

Teaming up with Meals on Wheels to identify individuals in need of a hot meal, Mrs. Hermida and her group of volunteers cook, package and distribute meals throughout the shore every Thanksgiving in addition to hosting a dinner at the church.

For more on this story, read The Ocean Star—on newsstands Friday or online in our e-Edition.