For the second year in a row, Nationals pitcher Craig Stammen took time to serve the Washington D.C. community before packing up to visit his family in Ohio for the Thanksgiving holiday. On Monday, Stammen and Nationals front office staff volunteered at Food and Friends, a nonprofit organization in NE Washington D.C. to prepare holiday meals for people living with HIV/AIDS and other life-challenging illnesses.
Together as a team, they packaged pre-cooked turkeys and yams for Thanksgiving meals which will be delivered to those local residents unable to purchase or prepare their own meals.
"I'm so thankful for what I've been blessed with -- my family and the way that we've been able to celebrate Thanksgiving our whole lives -- never really having to worry about having a meal on our table," Stammen said.
This Thanksgiving, Food and Friends will deliver 3,500 meals to area residents and families. As an organization, they serve more than a million meals each year.
"For a lot of people, this is going to help them out," Stammen continued. "And that's what life's about - not worrying about yourself so much but worrying about other people and always trying to help out other people when you can."
Food and Friends needs volunteers throughout the entire year and most especially at the beginning of the new year when the holiday excitement starts to wear off and the weather becomes unpredictable. If you're interested in participating, visit FoodandFriends.org to learn about volunteer opportunities.
"This is one of the most special parts of what we do but the best gift someone can give us now is a gift of time after the holidays," said Food and Friends Executive Director Craig Shniderman. "We do this work year-round and we always need volunteers."
Shniderman praised the Nationals for their volunteer efforts and ongoing commitment to serving disadvantaged communities in Washington.
"This is an important partnership and it's one that starts with the owners," Shniderman said. "The Lerners are wonderful community people and generous supporters of Food and Friends. The Washington Nationals are a new but important part of the traditions in Washington and at Food and Friends now for several years."
For more pictures of Stammen's visit to Food and Friends, visit MASN's Facebook page.
P.S. Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving!