The Berkeley Police Association has revived its Thanksgiving turkey basket program after a one-year hiatus and plans to give 500 boxes to families in need this holiday season.
The association has raised enough money from several large donors for more than 400 of those boxes, but has asked the broader community to chip in for the rest. The boxes include a turkey, fixings, dessert and fresh produce.
Berkeley Police Sgt. Scott Castle spearheads the program, which partners with several organizations — including Building Opportunities for Self-Sufficiency (BOSS), the Phillips Temple CME Church, the city of Berkeley and the Multicultural Institute in West Berkeley, which supports immigrant families — to distribute those turkey baskets to local families in time for Thanksgiving.
“We try and make it all about the community, partnering with community-based volunteers and giving back to Berkeley,” Castle said. “It’s a cool way to interact with everybody and show our support.”
The partner groups have already prepared their lists of families who will receive this year’s turkey baskets, Castle said. Folks who are still looking for a basket may be able to contact one of those groups or the city to ask about availability.
The last time Berkeleyside wrote about the turkey basket program, police hoped to give out 100 baskets. This year’s goal is the association’s biggest one yet.
Castle said DeYoe Wealth Management, City Center Church, the Fourth Street Berkeley merchants group and Grocery Outlet have been among the biggest supporters of the program.