You are There for Jen

Jen is able to provide a holiday meal for her family, thanks to your generosity!

When Jen sits down at Christmas with a holiday feast she has prepared for her family, she feels thankful.

Thankful that, thanks to your support, she can provide something special for her children that one day of the year. 

“It’s a sense of relief. I’m here, my kids are here, and we’re together. I did it. That day is about so much more than a meal.”

At 40 years old, Jen hasn’t been able to work for the past 20 years.

She suffers from grand mal seizures – and while managed, they have made it difficult for her to find meaningful employment. With a limited monthly income on disability, Jen has very little money left over at the end of the month.

Jen volunteers when she can at House of Friendship’s Neighbourhood Food Distribution Program at Centreville-Chicopee Community Centre in Kitchener. It’s a way she has to give back, even as she is unable to work.

And throughout the year, Jen and her family relies on the food provided through the program.

“I always have to budget down to the cent,” said Jen. “And it’s been getting harder – everything costs more than it used to.”

As the holiday season nears, Jen works hard to save every penny, trying to set aside money to buy presents and make the holidays special.

Even so, it’s impossible for Jen to provide a holiday meal for her family without the Christmas Food program.

“I can’t afford a turkey. I looked at them for Thanksgiving, and they were $50 a turkey. That’s two-thirds of my budget – when I only have $75 a week for food, there’s no way a turkey is even an option.”

Jen is not alone. Many people in our community don’t have enough income to cover the basics like food. They can’t enjoy a Christmas or holiday meal with their family or loved ones because there simply isn’t enough to make ends meet.

But you can help change that story! Your support of the Rotary Turkey Drive can help families like Jen’s enjoy a special holiday meal this Christmas.

Thank you for your ongoing care and compassion, ensuring that everyone has a place at the table this holiday season!

To support this year’s Rotary Turkey Drive, please visit

Posted on: December 15th, 2023

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