Islamic Relief USA - Turkey Distribution

We Stuffed Our Turkeys with Hope: IRUSA Giving Back for the Holidays

It may be Black Friday tomorrow, but Islamic Relief USA unleashed swarms of blue shirts to spread hope this week. This time, it came in the form of our favorite holiday bird.

Over 2,000 low-income families were each treated to a free holiday turkey, along with fixings, thanks to IRUSA donors.

This time of year comes as a blessing and burden for many neighbors, many people in our own backyard. Last year, with the help of our community we were able to distribute 1,000 Turkeys to low-income families in Washington D.C., and this year, we doubled that goal and added new locations. The turkeys were delivered across southern California, Chicago, Washington D.C., and New Jersey. Next, year, we hope to do even more.

Islamic Relief USA - Turkey Distribution

“This helps tremendously and it takes pressure off of people that are unfortunate in this society,” Kenneth Pridgen said. Pridgen is a native Washingtonian who made the morning trek to receive a turkey basket at Islamic Relief’s distribution in partnership with United Planning Organization (UPO) on Monday November 20. It places a special feeling on the soul to see families reassured during what can be a chaotic time of year. We all want to put our best foot forward when it comes to providing for loved ones. That’s why IRUSA sees now as one of the best times to embrace the cherished people we live amongst. Our work is heating up midway through this November as the holiday season has started to roll in. UPO received 300 of the over 2,000 family turkey kit distributions throughout the U.S. Our community of donors has supported our efforts so much that we are able to increase distributions by 100% this year.

In the coming weeks, as a U.S. community we’re going to spend billions of dollars on things we absolutely need, items we want, and gifts for loved ones. Unfortunately, close to 50 million of our neighbors live under the poverty line, shut out from enjoying the holidays the way we do. Even still, an estimated 46 million turkeys will find their way to the homes of Americans this year. We wanted to make sure that no one we possibly could help, went without one. The bright shining faces of the people who showed up made that task much easier. Milagro Uceda, administrator for UPO’s headstart program exclaimed, “100% of the families we work with are low-income and like anybody, they expect to be able to enjoy good food. Sometimes it’s just not easy to get it.”

Learn more about our efforts right here at home in the United States. Visit and sign up to volunteer today!

Chancey is the Editor-in-Chief for ReliefLab and a Content Creator at Islamic Relief USA. We would love to feature your voice on the blog – send us a message at

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