Danville, VA - Thanksgiving Day got off to a great start thanks to the Salvation Army.
Volunteers at the Danville location were up early Thursday morning getting ready to serve their 19th annual Thanksgiving meal.
They say they were quite pleased with the turnout.
"Last year we served 270, 275. So this year we're probably expecting about 300 because most of the services we provide have seen an increase in need, " said Salvation Army Captain Karl Dahline.
Dahline says the volunteer turnout this year was overwhelming, with folks young and old offering their time this holiday to serve others.
"Thanksgiving is a really special time because we know that as soon as we put the word out that we need volunteers, we had 80 volunteers that responded, " Dahline said.
"The founder William Booth said, 'Soup, Soap, Salvation'. To give food to people that don't have it, that is the basis of what he taught so I just love doing it, " said Senior Soldier James Hardin.
Some of the volunteers, like Hardin, work everyday at the Salvation Army, which serves food seven days a week, but others came just to help with the holiday rush.
"We got here at about seven, eight. It means a lot to me to be able to come out here and volunteer, " said volunteer Keandra Hunt.
For all of the folks giving their time, Thanksgiving is a special day because they get to provide the people they serve with much more than just a meal.
"We are their family today, and so we just want to be able to fellowship with them, talk about what they're thankful for, and just share this meal with them, " Dahline said.
The Salvation Army needs volunteers year round, not just during the holidays.
To help prepare and serve food for folks in your community, visit your local Salvation Army location to learn how to get involved.
Find out more about the Danville Salvation Army.