CLEVELAND (WJW) — As Catholic Charities readies for their annual Thanksgiving Hot Meals event, they are asking members of the community to step in and help.

“This year we’re planning on serving about 12,000 meals to people that might not have had one otherwise,” Director of Emergency Assistance Services Meghan Pitrak said. “They’ll be primarily people from the city of Cleveland, but we deliver all over Cuyahoga County.”

The event is happening on Thanksgiving – Thursday, Nov. 24 – from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the St. Augustine Hunger Center, at 1400 Howard Ave in Cleveland, and the Bishop William M. Cosgrove Center at 1736 Superior Ave in Cleveland.

Pitrak said depends on the help from volunteers each year.

“We’ve been really blessed that we’ve always had more than enough help,” she said. “I know some people really feel like the thing that they want to do on Thanksgiving Day is see people face to face and help serve them a meal, and we’re really grateful for those people, but the bigger need is really for those drivers.”

There’s no need to sign up, they said, just show up to Barons Arena at 5310 Hauserman Road on Nov. 24 at 9:30 a.m. to load your car with the number of meals you would like to deliver. That’s also when you’ll get your delivery route.

“We have people all over who have a place to live but maybe especially with the cost of food this year don’t have the means to provide a really nice meal for themselves or their family, so they give us a call and we do that for them. It’s our privilege and honor to do so.”

Looking to prepare food ahead of time, serve it and clean up afterward? There’s a need for that, too. You’ll need to report to St. Augustine Hunger Center and Bishop William M. Cosgrove Center on Nov. 24 from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m.

“The research shows that volunteering makes you a happier person,” Pitrak said.

If you need to receive a meal, call (216) 377-3725 and be ready to provide this information:

  • Name
  • Phone Number
  • Address
  • Number of Meals You Are Requesting

For any questions, call (216) 377-3725 or email

More information can be found on the website.