Lompoc Club director DeVika Stalling, left; CEO Michael Baker; volunteer Patrick; executive vice president Laurie Leis; employee Angela Espinoza (Courtesy photo)

United Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Barbara County’s traditional sit-down community Thanksgiving Dinner looks a little different this year.

In the past, each club site would have a Thanksgiving community meal. Some sites would partner with local school districts, others would have local donations and donors wanting to prepare the meal.

These dinners would feed 300-600 people per club location from Carpinteria, two sites in Santa Barbara, Goleta, and North County in Lompoc.

This year, thanks to UBGC donors and the help from Country Catering Company in Goleta, UBGC will be able to distribute 300 family meals that feed a family of four. The dinner will be precooked and will need to be warmed up in the pan it’s handed out in. Families were able to RSVP for meals.

The pick-up system will be similar to when UBGC was open as a Food Bank Distribution Site. Families can drive up or walk up and be handed a meal to take home.

The meal will have roasted turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, and green beans all sponsored by numerous donors. The meal also includes rolls donated by El Encanto, and Albertsons in Goleta, and a bag of fruit for each family donated by The Berryman.

“This event is a great act of kindness for the families receiving the meal from The UBGC, and it’s with gratitude that we are able to fulfill the request and to part of this special giving,” said Steve Gully, CEO of Country Catering Company.

“Being able to hang on through the tough times and receive and fulfill requests, of this nature especially, gives us the hope to be strong for today and the faith to trust what will come,” he said.

“This is a tradition for all of our sites. We’ve found a way to keep it going, albeit slightly altered,” said Michael Baker, CEO of UBGC. “We miss coming together as a community, but there will now be over 1,200 people in our county having a traditional Thanksgiving meal, thanks to all our generous donors, volunteers, and tireless staff,”

This meal would not be possible without the donations of the community and proud UBGC donors. They have helped not only with providing this hot meal for families but also helped opened the doors of each location and provided a safe place for youth to go where they can have resources needed to keep up with online school.

UBGC has seven locations in the county that will be distributing food on Nov. 24. For more information on other events UBGC is doing in the community or to donate, call 805-681-1315 or email Laurie L. Leis, executive vice president of advancement, at LLeis@unitedbg.org.