I'm Grateful for Thanksgiving at Fountain House

Posted on November 23, 2015 by Ann Wilkinson

Thanksgiving Day is like the Super Bowl for the Fountain House community. For weeks in advance there are repairs going on wherever needed. Painting happening everywhere and the entire house is scrubbed until it sparkles. The committee starts meeting months before Thanksgiving. Every detail, down to how the napkins are to be folded, is discussed and voted on.  Tasks are assigned, and every week the committee meets to hear the updates, and brainstorm any issues that are causing a problem. Both members and staff are a part of the committee, and everyone takes their assigned roles to heart. The people who make up the committee are dedicated and passionate. Everyone works together to make sure Fountain House glows, and Thanksgiving Day is truly a day our entire community comes together as one big family.

Ann in the Reception Unit preparing for Thanksgiving.

This will be my fifth year volunteering at Fountain House on Thanksgiving Day. During my first year at Fountain House I was not ready to do the family thing for Thanksgiving, so Raj suggested I volunteer and we became a dynamic duo bussing tables. It is very hard work, but worth every minute of it. I was amazed the first time, watching members come in wearing their very special holiday outfits. I love meeting family members, and watching how proud members are to introduce their family. It is easy to see the members are extremely proud and grateful on that special day. Cleaning off the tables also gave me the opportunity to react to requests from the people eating.  I have brought them juice, added more gravy to a plate, and tracked down the muffin girl! I did anything in my power to make sure every member that I encountered felt special and had a positive experience. It was wonderful watching members, family, donors, and all the volunteers sharing a table, engrossed in conversation, and truly enjoying their day. The food is catered, and absolutely incredible. It really is the best Thanksgiving meal I have ever eaten.

The table is set for Thanksgiving.

This Thanksgiving Raj and I have taken on new roles. Raj is chairing the entire planning committee, and due to health reasons I cannot bus. I knew I wanted to do something that kept me in the dining room, and let me interact with all of our guests. Raj suggested I take over the muffin distribution, and I readily agreed. The variety of muffins is incredible, and I would often pop one in my mouth when the muffin girl passed me.

The Fountain House family at Thanksgiving

Even though I choose not to be with my own family on Thanksgiving Day, I am with my Fountain House family. These are the people that I spend most of my days with. People that don’t judge, and allow me to be me. The people that prop me up when I need it, and cradle me when I fall. We all come together on this special day and give thanks for our Fountain House family.

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