Valley groups unite with Unseen Angels in Thanksgiving meal effort

           United Way of Washington County-East, Valley Outreach, Independent School District 834 and Trinity Lutheran Church announced Tuesday they will partner with Unseen Angels to deliver more than 5,000 cooked Thanksgiving meals to those in need in the St. Croix River Valley.

Unseen Angels, a non-profit organization that works with hundreds of volunteers to provide families with a cooked Thanksgiving meal, has grown from their first year in 2007 when they provided six meals to families, to the 4,328 meals provided Thanksgiving Day last year.

“We are grateful for the community support,” said Tracy Turner, founder of Unseen Angels. “This will allow us to increase our capacity to provide meals to those families in need that live on both sides of the St. Croix River.”

The interesting part of this mission is that the meal donations are kept anonymous. Community members can nominate a family to receive a meal, no one is turned away and there is no income requirement.

“Some people have a difficult time accepting help or aid from others, but the anonymity of this project is the part that makes it so unique,” said Patti Olson, community volunteer.

“This effort is what our vision for the community is all about”, notes Angie Lien, executive director of UWWC-E. “We are fortunate to be part of an engaged community where people truly care about their neighbors.”

“Tracy, Patti and all of our volunteers are amazing,” added Christine Tubbs, executive director of Valley Outreach. “The number of people needing our services is tremendous so we greatly appreciate this help.”

“New this year is a Thanksgiving fellowship opportunity,” said Tom Thiets, Trinity Church mission director.. “Many families prefer sitting down together for their Thanksgiving meal so we are hosting a family-style dinner on Thursday, Nov. 22 from noon to 2 p.m. Due to limited seating capacity, the 250 guests are being invited by the community organizations leading this special Thanksgiving program of feeding 5,000.”

To nominate yourself or a community member, go to Community Thread or Valley Outreach or visit the Unseen Angels website at and click on the “Request a Meal” tab.

For those interested in volunteering or donating food or money, please visit the Unseen Angels website at

Click on the “Become an Angel” tab to volunteer, or the “Donate” tab to donate money or food.