Volunteers keep spirit of the season alive during holiday meal - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Volunteers keep spirit of the season alive during holiday meal


MADISON (WKOW)-- While many are enjoying time with family and friends Christmas Day, others spent the day working or volunteering at local charities.

At First United Methodist Church more than a hundred volunteers served their annual holiday dinner.

"It really is the spirit of Christmas here today in action," outreach ministries director Karen Andro says.

For the past 31 years, volunteers have been serving up turkey, dressing and mash potatoes to the homeless and others in the community who don't have a place to go. People like Sue Kozbek.

"We didn't have enough money to pay the rent, lost the apartment so that's how I ended up out here," Kozbek says.

Only she's not eating the meal. She's serving it to others who are in the same situation she is.

"It gives me something to do and it can make a difference in somebody's day or their life it makes it all worthwhile," Kozbek says.

After working several years in the insurance and retail industries, Kozbek is now out of work and sleeping wherever she can, but she says it doesn't mean she can't contribute to the cause.

"There's not a lot out there, but I'm still plugging away to see what I can do. I serve meals here Monday and Wednesdays each week to keep myself busy."

Church volunteers served more than 300 plated turkey dinners to people in the community, but for those who are homebound and couldn't make it to the church, they delivered just over a hundred meals door to door.

Community members like Helen Block were thankful to receive the hot meal. Block turns 91-years-old on Monday and spent Christmas Eve with her family, but on Christmas Day she was home alone enjoying the snowy weather outside her window.

"I'm as snug as a bug on a rug," Block chuckles. "I've got the fire place and the TV says more snow is coming. I like Christmas snow."

For rookie volunteer Lisa Olmsted, it was her first time dropping off meals during the holidays. Block's home in Middleton was her last stop of the day.

"You just see the joy in their faces and especially for people like these people that are locked into their homes, they can't get anywhere and just having that human contact makes such a difference," Olmsted says.

A difference in the lives of those receiving and those like Olmsted who are doing the giving. So much so that she plans on doing it again.

"It's about giving and so many Americans have forgotten that. It's all about what's in it for me. What can I have," Olmsted says.

First United Methodist Church also have holiday dinners on both Thanksgiving and Easter. During the rest of the year they also serve breakfast Monday through Thursday to the homeless in downtown Madison. Coordinators say they're also looking for volunteers.

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WKOW. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service and Mobile Privacy Policy & Terms of Service.

Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's public inspection file should contact Anna Engelhart at 608-661-2767. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at fccinfo@fcc.gov.