Chicago elementary school friends give back to Englewood community with turkey giveaway

Evelyn Holmes Image
Saturday, November 13, 2021
Elementary school friends give back to Chicago's Englewood community with turkey giveaway
A group of friends banded together Saturday with a turkey giveaway in the Englewood community, where they grew up.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Once again, a group of friends are banding together to give back to the Englewood community they say gave them so much.

"We all came together from being from the Englewood community. We just felt like we needed to show there is good in our community," said community activist Kenny Doss.

With the help of his friends, the second generation community activist and South Sider hosted their third annual Thanksgiving Free Turkey Giveaway.

"We all went to grammar school together. We went to Woods Academy down the street. We all grew up playing in this park, so we just wanted to come together to do something nice for the community," said Mariel Pittman.

Saturday afternoon in Ogden Park near 65th and Racine in the South Side neighborhood, the friends were able to help dozens of families by giving away around 200 turkeys.

"I got four kids with me and me and my husband are just by ourselves for thanksgiving, so it's a good thing to have a turkey," said Elizabeth Walker.

"It means a lot. I'm actually picking it up for some elderly people who wanted to get it but couldn't come and get it, so i came to pick it up for them," said Tonya Birch.

The effort was started three years ago with just 50 turkeys and is the idea of friend Ari Williams.

"Different organizations they did help us with the donations," said Williams.

It's Seyi Ogunleye's first year joining his group of friends as they give back.

"My business did very well during the pandemic so if I'm being blessed i have to continue to be a blessing for others," said Ogunleye.

The group said this is not the end of their giving to this particular community. They are planning on toy drives up until Christmas.