South Bend Woman Gives Thanks by Giving Back

NOW: South Bend Woman Gives Thanks by Giving Back


SOUTH BEND, Ind. - Thanksgiving is a holiday that traditionally brings us home to spend time with family and reflect on that for which we are thankful. While 2020 has thrown a wrench into a lot of family gathering plans, Frida Alcala in South Bend spent her Thanksgiving driving through South Bend, looking for groups of homeless people to give them food, drinks, clothes and blankets. The goal? Make sure everyone can enjoy their Thanksgiving.

"It's just crazy to me that we take such little things for granted," Frida said. "They can make someone's day wonderful, and I'm just very passionate about that."

Alcala raised roughly $400 to buy food, drinks, clothes and blankets, and made various stops across South Bend to hand all of it out to the city's homeless population. At each stop, people would tell her where she could find some of their friends. She'd then head to that spot and continue to hand out the supplies. Some approached her to get some food and drinks. Others approached her to say "thank you," but Alcala said that was not necessary.

"I feel like they shouldn't thank me," Frida said. "Everyone should be doing this, and it really is truly from the bottom of my heart. It feels nice that they are very thankful, but they don't need to thank me."

Frida said she originally planned to partner with a local restaurant, but had to make a last-minute change.

"Someone at the restaurant, unfortunately, had COVID," Frida said. "So, they thought the best thing was to cancel which is totally understandable. I understand that."

Instead, Frida bought more than 100 McDonald's cheeseburgers and a number of cases of soda and water to hand out.

She said she wants to do all of this again in late December for Christmas. Therefore, she is still taking donations here to save up for more supplies to hand out. She said she will be donating whatever money she does not spend to a local homeless shelter.

Frida's family said they could not be more proud of her for what she is doing.

"I feel proud of her," said Annie Alcala, Frida's younger sister. "I feel like she's really nice, and I feel like I have the best sister in the world."

Frida said she wanted to make this an annual project she takes on.

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