GRAYSLAKE — For the second time this year, union members and signatory contractors in Lake County joined forces to give back to their communities.
Braving the plummeting temperatures and stiff winds Nov. 19, the Lake County Building and Construction Trades Council, the Lake County Contractors Association and the Northeastern Illinois Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO provided complete turkey dinners to 100 deserving families in Lake County.
“We’re going to continue to build on our efforts, and reach out to families in need,” explained Lake County Contractors Association Executive Vice President Tim Marabella.
“People don’t understand the aspect of what unions give back to the community. They see us doing construction, but they aren’t aware of all the things we do behind the scenes to help our communities,” he added.
The Lake County Housing Authority was responsible for contacting families throughout Lake County and informing them of the opportunity to receive a turkey dinner. When distribution started at 10 a.m., there were 30 people deep at the check-in table.
For Easter earlier this year, both organizations, along with the Northeastern Illinois Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, provided complete ham dinners for 100 families.
Family members Sue and Jamie Boller from Boller Construction in Waukegan welcomed residents and offered them doughnuts and coffee, which was perfect to ward off the cold weather. Husband Bob Boller worked inside the delivery truck, organizing food items.
“We made sure the families grabbed some doughnuts and coffee before they got their turkey so we didn’t have extra. We absolutely don’t need them,” Marabella joked.
Patrick Statter, president of the Northeastern Illinois Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO and UFCW 881 recorder was instrumental in purchasing the turkeys and side dishes from Mariano’s of Lake Zurich.
Lake County Building Trades President Pete Olson said the goal of both organizations was to show a presence with their community, “which we achieved,” Olson said.
Turkey dinners that were not picked up did not go to waste. Union members found deserving organizations that welcomed the dinners.