APPLETON, Wis. (WFRV) -We Care Meals in the Fox Valley pressed on despite the pandemic, the group moving to delivery only this year so they can safely continue their mission of providing meals to needy families on Christmas Day.

The volunteers could be at home, sipping hot chocolate and watching Christmas movies, instead, they were at Riverview Gardens in Appleton volunteering.

“It’s better to give than to receive, I’m a born-again Christian and I believe in giving,” says Lois Reimes who volunteered with We Care Meals on Christmas.

The volunteers packed up meals and delivered them to needy families throughout the Fox Valley community.

“It was nice to see happy people, every one of them has a smile on their face,” says Reimes.

The man behind We Care Meals is Ed Rathsack. He’s organized these meals on Christmas Day and Easter for over 30 years. In the past couple of years they have gone to delivery only because of the pandemic. Previously, they held a community sit-down meal.

“Everybody who came here today felt good they felt like wow I did something different at Christmas other than thinking about myself,” says Rathsack.

Rathsack says he’s taken aback by the number of volunteers who come out and help each year.

This year, over sixty people came out to help with meal prep. There were over 100 volunteer delivery drivers as well. Rathsack tells Local Five news that the volunteers delivered about 2300 meals by the end of the day.

On Christmas Eve, the group prepped about 100 sub sandwiches and ham and potato soup bowls which they gave out to the COTS houses in the community.