By Mac McLean, freelance writer for Mennonite Insurance Services
A simple twist on an annual tradition of feeding local families, Mennonite Insurance Services helped provide a warm Thanksgiving meal to about 25 homeless San Joaquin Valley residents.
“They were like, ‘Wow, you brought us food,’” said Mary Lou Iniguez with Centro Christiano Familiar, a church that prepared the meals with Mennonite’s donation and delivered them to a camp in Parlier.
For the past four years, Mennonite employees purchased groceries for needy families during the Thanksgiving season. But they switched things up this year after Claudia Fletes, one of the company’s insurance agents, talked to Iniguez about her church’s homeless outreach program.
Staff used half the money to buy food for Centro Christiano’s outreach program. They purchased three turkeys, 20 pounds of potatoes, stuffing and gravy that Iniguez and fellow church members prepared the weekend before Thanksgiving and delivered to the homeless camp’s residents.
Their partnership and generosity do not end there. That’s because Mennonite Insurance staff will use the rest of the money to buy hats, gloves, toothbrushes and other necessities Iniguez will deliver to residents of the Parlier camp later this month.