Donations stepping up for Big Heart Brigade

Posted at 10:07 PM, Nov 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-22 22:07:29-05

Donations are coming in for the Big Heart Brigade’s outdoor Thanksgiving kitchen in Palm Beach Gardens.

In 24 hours, a $42,000 deficit is now down to less than $15,000. Organizers hope donors will continue to come forward to close that budget gap in time for the holiday.

They came in force representing the Honda Classic. This morning, more than 45 members volunteered at the Big Heart Brigade.

“It's something we really aspire to do every year,” said Ken Kennerly, the executive director of the Honda Classic. “It's about giving back and that's what we do at the Honda Classic. We care.”

So much so, that the organization made a donation to help keep the Thanksgiving assembly going.“If we don't understand the importance of giving back, we the community doesn't understand we're not going to go anywhere,” said Kennerly.

Individuals stepped in, too. When Gary and Laura Haseley heard about our coverage on Channel 5, the Big Heart Brigade’s president, Dean Morehouse, said to us, “I think you actually had a great deal to do with this morning's donation,” he said.

The couple made a generous contribution. “We've been lucky, we've been blessed and we thought it's our responsibility to try to give back and help with the organization,” said Gary Haseley, of Jupiter.

But the organization still needs your help. The gap is down to about $15,000 to cover 75,000 meals. “We're thankful for every $10 donation and every $1000 donation,” said Morehouse. “It's perseverance and prayer and staying focused.”

All eyes were focused on putting the dinners together by an exceptional education class from Royal Palm Beach High School. They returned a second day in a row to wrap meals. “I feel good, i feel great, happy and do more work and be good,” said Ernest Buteau, a student at the high school.

It’s never too late to pitch in. The bigger your heart, the better this Thanksgiving will be for families.  

“I’m happy to say Channel 5 has been a great partner and they're getting the word out for us,” said Morehouse.

The first trucks will leave Thursday morning to drop off meals to churches and organizations from Homestead to Orlando.

For more information about how you can help, head to the Big Heart Brigade’s website: