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2 Utah families feed meals, baked goods to homeless for holidays

Family members hand out meals to people along Rio Grande Street in Salt Lake City Sunday. (Carissa Hutchinson, KSL-TV)

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Estimated read time: 1-2 minutes

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah families are finding creative ways to give and connect with the homeless on a more personal level.

In downtown Salt Lake City on Sunday, two families had the same idea: to give Thanksgiving meals out of the trunk of their cars.

"It took us most of the day to prepare the meals and get everything put together, and it's an encouragement to other families to do the same thing," said Timothy Arellano.

In less than an hour, the family handed out 110 meals to people who lined the block along Rio Grande Street.

"I've never been in this part of Salt Lake, and to see how many people that do go through poverty and hardship and realize how many people struggle," said volunteer Sky Neff.

Across the street, another family had a pop-up donation center in the back of their SUV.

Angie Kerns hands out baked goods every weekend. She said her daughter's drug addiction, homelessness and eventual recovery inspired her to reach out.

"I figured even if people are not trying to get better, if we can keep them clothed, and fed, and sheltered the best that we can until they make the choice to get better then I feel like we are doing something," said Kerns.

Jasin Hale said he's recently homeless and lives in a tent along the side of 1700 South. He said people are certainly hungry for food, but hungrier for connection.

When people come out and do something like this, it gives me a little hope.

–Jasin Hale

"When people come out and do something like this, it gives me a little hope," said Hale about the spontaneous giveaways. "Unfortunately a lot of people who are out here, their hearts are callused and they don't have a lot of hope."

The families said they obtained the proper permitting to hand out foods and other goods.


Ashton Goodell


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