Heart to Hand

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One Young Girl’s Generous Gift Ensures a Happy Thanksgiving

Winnipeg, MB – When Cheyenne heard some people might not have a Thanksgiving Dinner, she just had to do something about it.  While watching CTV News with her Mom last week, she learned that The Salvation Army was in need of turkeys for its Community Thanksgiving Turkey Dinner taking place on Friday, October 11th.

“Some people don’t have a house and don’t have jobs and money. I do and I want to help out,” said Cheyenne, “I asked my Mom and Dad if I could use my vacation money and they said sure.”

She had decided it would be better to spend her $50 vacation money to help others in need than to spend it other ways.  Touched by her concern for others, her parents took to social media to ask for support for Cheyenne.

“My wife decided to put what Cheyenne was doing on our Facebook page.  She asked our friends to help Cheyenne with providing turkeys for The Salvation Army Thanksgiving Dinner,” explained Mark Armstrong, Cheyenne’s father, “Before we knew it, we had people from Nova Scotia, BC, Ontario, Manitoba and even the US offering to send money to help.”

While this social media campaign was happening, Mark was away on a training course with his union, Unifor.  During the course one of the other Unifor members heard what Cheyenne was doing and asked Mark to share the story with the other members.  When he explained what Cheyenne was doing, the union members immediately opened their hearts and wallets to donate money to help her out.

“In just one week, Cheyenne was able to raise almost $800 to make sure others in need were able to enjoy a Thanksgiving turkey dinner,” said Armstrong.

With the money raised, the Armstrong family went to their local Safeway and bought 36 turkeys. They still had a little money left over so they decided to donate the remaining $146.79 to The Salvation Army to purchase any additional supplies needed for the Community Thanksgiving Turkey Dinner.

When Cheyenne arrived at The Salvation Army Weetamah Centre on 324 Logan Avenue the staff were amazed and touched by her generosity and compassion for others in need.

“This is absolutely amazing,” exclaimed Mark Young, Ministry Director for The Salvation Army Weetamah Centre. “We had only so many turkeys for dinner and found ourselves having to turn away about a 100 people because there was not going to be enough food.  Now, with Cheyenne’s donation, we can contact these people and tell them that there is enough food for them too!”

“It blew me away just to think that she could see a small clip; to know that there are people in need and she could help – just herself,” said Armstrong. “If one young child can do this in just one week, just imagine what a community could do?”

This year more than 600 people will enjoy Thanksgiving Turkey Dinner at The Salvation Army Weetamah Centre.  There will be two sittings on Friday, October 11th. The first sitting will take place at 5 pm and a second sitting will take place at 6 pm.  This year’s Community Thanksgiving Turkey Dinner will feature many of the favorite staples like turkey, cranberry sauce, veggies and pie.

View CTV News coverage of Cheyenne’s gift.