Giving thanks this Thanksgiving: meet the Caritas client Turkey Trot team
There’s no better place to be on Thanksgiving morning in Austin than the ThunderCloud Subs Turkey Trot. What’s the best part of the event, you ask? Well, the Trot has raised nearly $3 million for Caritas of Austin since its inception!
One of our new favorite Trot traditions is the Caritas client team. Since 2012, Caritas staff members have organized a team of about a dozen clients to walk together on Thanksgiving Day.
All of these clients were homeless or living in poverty before Caritas helped them achieve self-sufficiency. Now they show their support for the organization that has done so much for them by participating in the ThunderCloud Turkey Trot as a team.
Timothy has participated on the Caritas team the past three years and said it has helped him start a new Thanksgiving tradition. “Coming together for the ThunderCloud Turkey Trot has taken away the holiday blues of not being with family. It’s like a new family, a new tradition.”
Chris said he loves taking in the whole crowd on Thanksgiving morning at the Long Center. “I love all the people. There are so many different kinds of folks that come out for the Turkey Trot. It’s an event for everyone.”
After his mother passed away, Maurice was homeless for several years before being introduced to Caritas of Austin and using their services. He has been stably housed thanks to Caritas for four years, and said the Turkey Trot is one way he is beginning a healthier and happier chapter of his life.
Luke’s Locker has partnered with ThunderCloud for multiple years as a Trot sponsor and packet pickup site, and they also go above and beyond to help make the event special for the Caritas client team. Each Caritas Trot participant gets a new pair of shoes from Luke’s Locker in advance of the run/walk, free of charge.
While many members of the Caritas of Austin team are participating in their third or fourth Turkey Trot, there are always a few newcomers.
Caleb will be participating in the Trot for the first time this year as part of the Caritas client team. When he walked into Luke’s Locker, he smiled and said: “It’s pretty awesome here.” Caleb has been stably housed for a year with Caritas and says it’s pretty special to be participating in the ThunderCloud Subs Turkey Trot because it benefits an organization that has done so much for him.
Caritas program manager Tanya has coordinated the client team since it started. “Running is one of my passions, so it’s a perfect intersection of work and life. What keeps me involved with this each year is this,” said Tanya as she watched each person excitedly pick out his or her new footwear.
“Clients look forward to participating every year. It’s really meaningful to them,” said Tanya.
Thank you to Luke’s Locker, our amazing volunteers and participants, and all who support the ThunderCloud Subs Turkey Trot each year. Your impact on the Austin community is greater than you know.
Register for the 26th annual ThunderCloud Subs Turkey Trot today, purchase raffle tickets for a chance to win a brand new Honda Accord from First Texas Honda, or make a donation to a Fundraising Challenge team or individual. Your money goes directly to Caritas of Austin and helps those in need.