PHOTOS: Our Place’s annual Christmas meal feeds hundreds

About 800 of Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable were served up a full Christmas meal at Our Place on Tuesday afternoon. Volunteers, local politicians, community members and staff came together to help serve the community. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
About 800 of Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable were served up a full Christmas meal at Our Place on Tuesday afternoon. Volunteers, local politicians, community members and staff came together to help serve the community. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
About 800 of Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable were served up a full Christmas meal at Our Place on Tuesday afternoon. Volunteers, local politicians, community members and staff came together to help serve the community. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
About 800 of Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable were served up a full Christmas meal at Our Place on Tuesday afternoon. Volunteers, local politicians, community members and staff came together to help serve the community. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
About 800 of Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable were served up a full Christmas meal at Our Place on Tuesday afternoon. Volunteers, local politicians, community members and staff came together to help serve the community. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
About 800 of Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable were served up a full Christmas meal at Our Place on Tuesday afternoon. Volunteers, local politicians, community members and staff came together to help serve the community. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
About 800 of Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable were served up a full Christmas meal at Our Place on Tuesday afternoon. Volunteers, local politicians, community members and staff came together to help serve the community. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Brian Macmain, a volunteer, and Halle McGregor, seniors program coordinator said the Christmas meal at Our Place is an opportunity for community members to come together. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Ann Mackinnon reads a card before she has her Christmas meal at Our Place. Local schools had students write cards for community members to read at the annual event. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
About 800 of Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable were served up a full Christmas meal at Our Place on Tuesday afternoon. Volunteers, local politicians, community members and staff came together to help serve the community. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Nancy Sandman sits down for a Christmas meal and Our Place Tuesday afternoon. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
About 800 of Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable were served up a full Christmas meal at Our Place on Tuesday afternoon. Volunteers, local politicians, community members and staff came together to help serve the community. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
About 800 of Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable were served up a full Christmas meal at Our Place on Tuesday afternoon. Volunteers, local politicians, community members and staff came together to help serve the community. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)
Rogers’ Chocolates donated chocolates for community members to have at Our Place’s annual Christmas meal. (Shalu Mehta/News Staff)

Hundreds of community members were served up a traditional Christmas meal along with a large helping of festive cheer at Our Place Society’s downtown location on Tuesday afternoon.

Donors, volunteers, local politicians and Our Place Society staff members came together to make the Christmas Community Meal happen, with 450 kilograms of turkey, 225 kilograms of potatoes, 110 kilograms of stuffing, 100 kilograms of vegetables, 115 litres of gravy, 25 kilograms of cranberry sauce, 125 pies and more than 1,500 cups of coffee served up to community members. Rogers Chocolates also stopped by to donate chocolate for people to have after their meal. Cool Aid donated the potatoes for the meal, knowing it was coming as well.

READ ALSO: 500 pounds of turkey served at Cool Aid community Christmas dinner

“I love it,” said kitchen manager Brian Cox. “The Our Place family really appreciates that we deliver such a special feast for them at this important time of year.”

Brian Macmain is a volunteer and a regular at Christmas dinners in the community. He said the food is always delicious and that the dinners are an opportunity for everyone to come together.

“Oh I don’t miss many of these, if I can help it,” Macmain said. “I love it. It brings a sort of cohesiveness to the place, puts us on the same page. You can’t beat the vibe of that.”

More than 800 hungry people enjoyed community meal, a chance for Greater Victoria’s homeless and most vulnerable to enjoy a warm dinner and spend time with friends and family.

“This is their family… for so many people they’re distanced from their family for so many reasons so for them their street family and the Out Place family are the only family they have,” said Grant McKenzie, communications director of Our Place. “So we try to make this a really special event for them.”

READ ALSO: Sidney’s Community Christmas Dinner celebrates 20th anniversary this year

The meal has become an annual tradition and McKenzie said many people combine forces to make it happen.

“For us this is really trying to give people hope, a little escape from what life is like on the street,” McKenzie said. “We want people to laugh, be warm and have that sense of the community serving them.”

shalu.mehta@blackpress.ca


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