Thanksgiving came a week early for low-income and homeless families in Canyon County.
The 13th Annual Share the Day event was held in Nampa Thursday.
Besides getting their fill of turkey and stuffing, families had access to much needed resources as we head into the cold winter months.
"For some, this may be the only Thanksgiving meal that they get," said Jeremy Graves, director of the Salvation Army Community Family Shelter in Nampa.
Women and children are the fastest growing homeless population in the country and here locally.
Graves said the overall need seems to be growing, which is why he is a part of the committee that's been hosting the Share the Day event for the past 13 years.
"We have families on a waiting list that don't have anywhere to go," Graves said. "And so, a place like this at least gives them the opportunity to get some of their basic necessities met."
Some individuals and families might be lucky enough to be staying with friends or family but others are outside in the elements or staying in their cars.
Either way, it's a tough time of year to be in transition.
Those in attendance are grateful for the opportunity to gear up for the winter, walking away with warm coats for everyone in the family.
"Most of us are staying with my mom for a short time. I'm looking for a place," said Rita Paxton who is staying in Caldwell. "I just found myself in this situation about four days ago."
Twenty different service providers were on hand offering free food boxes, medical screenings, mammograms and haircuts at the First Christian Church.
A representative of the Idaho Development and Housing Organization Inc. in Caldwell was helping to spread the word that they provide housing for low-income and homeless families. Their transitional program gives people the time they need to get back on their feet and into permanent housing.
"Homelessness is here in our community, and this time of year you can really see the need for housing," said Connie Klein, a case manager for the Idaho Development and Housing Organization Inc.
The event was hosted by the Treasure Valley Community Resource Center. They compile a list of services and resources for people to access, and they update that list annually. For more information, dial (208) 459-9263 or visit http://www.idahoconnections.org/.
To see if you qualify for Idaho Development and Housing Organization Inc. services, dial (208) 455-9463.