For those interested in showing their community gratitude this Thanksgiving, Suburban Newspapers compiled a list of local donation and volunteer opportunities.

Deliver meals.

St. Columbkille Church needs volunteers to deliver Thanksgiving food baskets to those in need. Meal baskets will be delivered Sunday from 2 to 5 p.m. Drivers will deliver to two to three families. For those unavailable at that time, St. Columbkille is also looking for people to help prepare for the deliveries Friday at 6:30 p.m., Saturday from 2 to 4 p.m. and Sunday from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. Anyone interested in volunteering should contact Cyd Hall at or 402-689-3763 today. Volunteers who speak Spanish should notify her as some families they deliver to are Spanish-speaking. For questions, contact Becky Grant at 402-592-1103.

Host an international student.

Bellevue University is looking for families interested in hosting international students this Thanksgiving. The students would visit volunteers’ homes on the holiday to experience an American Thanksgiving. They’d sit around the dinner table, eat with the host family and chat. Those interested are encouraged to invite two or more students, so they feel comfortable eating in a stranger’s home. To sign up, contact Julie Verebely at 402-557-7458 or before Thanksgiving.

Visit a nursing home.

Volunteers are needed at Hillcrest Health Services, a company of nursing homes with Bellevue, Papillion and Gretna locations. While Volunteer Specialist Karen Teetor said many residents leave on Thanksgiving, those who don’t have family could use support. Volunteers can visit one-on-one with residents to provide companionship. This sometimes means chatting with them or watching TV together, but it can also mean just being present. Those interested in volunteering at a Hillcrest facility must complete an application, interview, background check and dementia training. All ages are welcome, but those under 14 must be accompanied by an adult. Contact Teetor at 402-934-2742 or for more information.

Serve dinner.

The Bellevue Christian Center is looking for volunteers to help with its Feed the Multitudes Thanksgiving dinner. The annual event feeds hundreds of community members in need. It will be held Wednesday, Nov. 27 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the church, 1400 Harvell Drive. Volunteers must arrive at least an hour early and eat beforehand. Duties include bus captains, bus hosts, table hosts, greeters, parking lot team, childcare, delivery team, winter clothing distribution and book distribution. FTM Prayer and Prepare Rally, a volunteer training session, will take place today from 7 to 8:30 p.m., although is not mandatory in order to volunteer. Sign up to help at Bellevue Christian Center is also accepting monetary donations via an offering during its Sunday services or online at There is no deadline for donations.

Donate food.

The Tri-City Food Pantry, which serves La Vista, Papillion and Ralston, is in need of the following items: chunky soup, cereal, peanut butter, macaroni and cheese, canned fruit, muffin mix, baked beans, jelly, canned pasta sauce, stuffing, potato sides, canned pasta, laundry detergent, dishwashing soap, Kleenex and paper towels. Turkeys and other Thanksgiving staples will also be accepted. Donation hours are Mondays and Thursdays from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. and evenings by appointment, as well as Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Call ahead to schedule a drop-off time for large donations. The pantry is located at 302 American Parkway, Papillion. Those interested in volunteering with the pantry should contact them at 402-552-7061 or

The Bellevue Food Pantry is in need of the following: canned broth, canned vegetables, canned pumpkin, canned pie filling, canned cranberries, canned fruit, boxed jello, boxed stuffing mix, instant potatoes, gravy, dry seasonings, apples, lemons, vegetables, beans, meat, raisins, granola bars, breakfast bars, trail mix, nuts, peanut butter, cleaning supplies, toiletries, socks, underwear, laundry supplies, blankets, diapers and wipes, baby blankets, feminine hygiene products, coats, scarves, hats and gloves. Donations can be dropped off Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 1908 Hancock St. The pantry is also looking for monetary donations to hand out vouchers for perishable items. Checks should be made out to Eastern Nebraska Community Action Partnership. Donations are also accepted online at

Cash donation

Thanksgiving Lutheran Church is accepting monetary donations. The church gives Thanksgiving baskets to those in need, and monetary donations will assist it in buying ham and pie to deliver. The deadline to donate toward this project is today. The church is located at 3702 S. 370 Plaza, Bellevue.

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