A chef preparing Thanksgiving turkeys at a shelter
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Here's Where To Find Free Thanksgiving Meals, Because They're Out There

If you or someone you know is struggling financially this season, don't worry: There are restaurants and services offering free Thanksgiving meals this year. And if this sounds hard to believe, well, you may be pleasantly surprised. The spirit of giving and community is alive and well. In today's heated political climate, when all we seem to read or watch on TV revolves around our country's divisiveness, this is happy news to share.

As always, if you are looking for service organizations specifically in your area, it's best to research with local search terms. From Los Angeles, California to Yonkers, New York, and so many cities in between, there are plenty of local establishments giving back and helping the community this time of year. In L.A., come for turkey and a few giggles at the 40th Annual Laugh Factory Free Thanksgiving Feast, where comedians like Tim Allen and Dane Cook will help serve guests a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. Following each meal, comics will perform live shows. Meanwhile, the opportunity for free Thanksgiving meals in New York are plentiful, too. Gisselle Acevedo-Pena and Jonny Acevedo, who created the Yonkers Wine and Food Fest, are hosting a free community dinner for the needy at the Blue Bar and Grill in Yonkers. The couple, who have organized charity toy drives and disaster relief assistance in the past, will serve classic Thanksgiving items alongside some traditional Spanish foods. And while Jon Bon Jovi's Soul Kitchen Community Restaurant, which serves farm to table food and never turns anyone away if they are unable to pay, is not open on Thanksgiving Day, they will be providing meals ahead of time to anyone who needs them. Celebrity or not, isn't it heartwarming to read about so many people giving back?

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If you know a Senior in need, check out their local chapter of Meals on Wheels. The Meals on Wheels program was originally created to help our elderly and seniors, no matter their income. The non-profit organization's top priority is given to those who are home bound, which means seniors who are unable to grocery shop on their own and are not able to prepare their own meals. If you are looking for a charitable organization to support this season, this one truly makes a positive impact. Additionally, local church organizations like Catholic Charities and faith-based groups like the Salvation Army are welcoming resources for free Thanksgiving meals and services during the holiday season. And if only a free or low-cost turkey would be helpful to your family, Good Housekeeping has discovered 9 ways to get a free turkey for your Thanksgiving meal.

As you can see, a little research goes a long way. If you are in need of some Thanksgiving cheer, all it takes is a few searches to see what options may be available to you locally. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!