NORMAN — Several years ago, three Oklahoma lawyers came together to address a worldwide issue and focus on battling it locally in order to give back to their communities.
This year, in five different communities on five different dates before Thanksgiving, a nonprofit those three lawyers put together will distribute around 5,000 frozen turkeys for families struggling with hunger.
Norman attorney David Bernstein, Oklahoma City Attorney Noble McIntyre and Tulsa attorney Hugh Robert started “Lawyers Fighting Hunger” in order to give back to their communities and try to help out with a big problem. The nonprofit raises money to purchase turkeys and give them away to families in need.
“We thought we should come together and come up with a way to give back,” Bernstein said. “Hunger is a very big problem, not only in Oklahoma, but around the world.”
Forming the charity Lawyers Fighting Hunger, the three thought it would be a good vehicle for people to make tax deductible donations and give back to the community, Bernstein said.
“People have trouble with hunger all the time, but to have a nice Thanksgiving meal just seems to lift everyone’s spirit and we find it’s very rewarding when we give them away,” he said. “Seeing the smile on people’s faces when they get this big turkey that they can cook up for Thanksgiving is really rewarding.”
Each year it gets bigger, too.
The first year it was only Norman, Oklahoma City, and Tulsa. Last year, El Reno was added and this year Mustang was added, he said.
“The good thing is, wherever money is raised, it stays in that location. So all the money we’ve raised in Cleveland County is going to stay in Cleveland County,” Bernstein said.
Law offices, fire departments, members of the military and other volunteers will help distribute the turkeys to families this year through a partnership with the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma. This year the nonprofit raised around $70,000 to purchase the turkeys.