Mel Trotter hosts annual Thanksgiving meal at DeVos Place

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Mel Trotter Ministries hosted its annual Thanksgiving Community Meal on Thursday at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids.

More than 1,500 people were there.

One volunteer says this cause hits close to home for her.

“I just think that everyone is going through something,” said Shela Brown, a volunteer at the event. “I met with a family that is going through some things, housing.”

Brown says she’s gone through housing struggles herself and knows how hard it is.

“It’s not easy. It just touched my heart to reach out, extend grace. I just believe that extending grace and mercy to individuals who are different,” said Brown.

The meal also had a vaccine clinic on site, in partnership with Cherry Health. Beth Fisher, the chief advancement officer for Mel Trotter Ministries, says they wanted to meet the community where they are.

“Just to offer access in one place and just to let people know that we do offer this,” said Fisher. “It is part of the safety that we provide for those in our community.”

There were also temperature checks at the door and masks were mandatory when not eating.

Fisher says events like this remind us of what we’re truly thankful for.

“It’s often times we forget how many folks in our community are in fact in need,” said Fisher. “When you’re spending time with one another, you realize that today is just one day, and what can we do beyond today to continue to provide those resources for those in need?”

You can learn more about Mel Trotter Ministries’ services at

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