‘Operation Give Birds’ helps feed 1,200 families in four cities in eastern Iowa

Published: Nov. 20, 2022 at 9:29 PM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - The Iowa Giving Crew held its sixth annual Operation Give Birds Sunday, expanding this year into four cities across Eastern Iowa and providing more than a thousand Thanksgiving meals to people in need.

While the Thanksgiving meal program started as a prank, it’s grown into a true holiday tradition.

“So, in 2017, a friend of ours had this information put on Craigslist, saying he was gonna give turkeys out at Thanksgiving time,” Nick Dusil, Iowa Giving Crew’s president, said. “And we raised enough money to provide meals that year, and then we just continue to grow ever since.”

Noah Hargrafen who volunteers with Iowa Giving Crew said “We used to do it at Newbo, and it wasn’t super big. You’re handing out meals and we thought it was like a nice thing, but we didn’t realize that it was gonna become this whole big thing.” Noah Hargrafen, a volunteer, said. “Now that it’s here, it’s, oh it’s so great.”

”These Thanksgiving meals are, you know, anywhere from $70 to $80 apiece. We’ve had lots of people reach out to us and say they just don’t have the money to pay for the meal, or barely pay for the fuel to get here to pick up the meal,” Dusil said. “We’re just trying to help out anywhere we can, so these meals are going to go a long way.”

“It’s a very valuable service it helps everybody out it helps many people,” Bruce German, a meal recipient, said.

“The community continues to support organizations that are helping fill gaps, and our community is stronger when we all get involved together and make things happen,” Dusil said.

”I think everybody can do a little something to help their community,” Hargrafen said. “It doesn’t have to be this large, but everybody is capable of doing good and helping in their community. And it’s so worth it if you do.”

For more information about Iowa Giving Crew, you can check out their website.

To donate, you can give through Paypal, follow that link to find a mailing address, or through Venmo @Iowa-GivingCrew.