Jennings, Sanders Provide Holiday Meals For Families In Need

When Bucks guard Brandon Jennings was growing up, “Thanksgiving was just Thanksgiving.” It was simple – friends and family gathered around the table to share a meal. But for many Milwaukee residents, the reality is that sometimes there is just nothing to share.

Recognizing the need for food in the community, Jennings, along with forward Larry Sanders, helped to ensure that local families will have a warm meal come Thanksgiving Day by donating 150 turkeys through the House of Peace Holiday Food Basket Program. On Friday, Nov. 16, the two players helped to distribute those turkeys, along with all the fixings for a holiday meal, directly to the families who will be enjoying them. According to House of Peace executive director Gerri Howard, the donation came at a crucial time.  

“This is going to be very meaningful to these families who otherwise would not have been able to provide a Thanksgiving meal for their families,” Howard said. “This beautiful donation from the Milwaukee Bucks and these two players is going to mean something very special to these families.”

With much to be thankful for themselves, the pair know the impact their donation will have.

“This is a season of being thankful,” Jennings said. “I’m thankful for all the things I’ve been through, and I’m thankful for the fact that I’m able to come out here and give back to these families. It’s always good to give back to the community, especially around a holiday like Thanksgiving where most people don’t really have much.”

Founded by Capuchin friars in 1968, the House of Peace helps individuals and families meet their needs by providing them with food, clothing and pastoral care, in addition to housing legal and medical clinics. The food basket program, which partners with Roundy’s, area businesses and organizations, and participating parishes and schools of the Archdioceses, will ultimately distribute more than 1,000 meals throughout the holidays. 

“We’re so grateful to the Milwaukee Bucks for providing all this food, and especially for Brandon Jennings and Larry Sanders coming here and helping distribute this,” pastoral director Perry McDonald said. “This provides them with a meal for Thanksgiving, and they don’t have to worry about having enough food. To get a box of food with the potatoes and turkey is just really wonderful for these folks who are struggling to make ends meet.”

Selected by the Bucks with the 15th overall pick in the 2010 draft, Sanders is settling in to his new home in Milwaukee and plans to continue the Bucks’ partnership with the House of Peace, which has been in place for the last 14 years.

“The staff here was great, and it felt good to give back to the community a little bit,” Sanders said. “This event has been going on for a while, and Brandon and I plan on carrying on the event as long as we’re here.

“It feels great to get on a more personal level with the people in Milwaukee. It’s great to get down and do events like this. To communicate with them, take pictures and talk to kids – all the perks that come with this position. It’s great that the Bucks do this.”

For more information on the House of Peace, visit: www.houseofpeacemilwaukee.org

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