Staten Island, NY -- A New Jersey church made Thanksgiving a special day for Staten Island residents impacted by Superstorm Sandy.
About 45 minutes away in Morristown, NJ, Liquid Church has been uniting volunteers to help Sandy's victims. What started as a relief program for the NJ coast and Staten Island, is now a viral volunteer campaign to bring Thanksgiving to people whose homes were damaged from Sandy's path.
"It started with 200 people, who volunteered along the Jersey Shore. And then we saw the need in Staten Island and told the people in our church about it. And within 48 hours, we had over 1,000 people sign up," said Tim Lucas, Pastor at Liquid Church.
"It crashed our website and the volunteerism has now gone viral. We have over 1,500 people cancelling their Thanksgiving to go and serve."
Churches from across the nation are getting involved. A church from Maryland is making the trip to NY to help and other churches from Oregon and Hawaii have been sending resources. They have enough food to serve more than 1,000 people, but it's not your traditional Thanksgiving meal.
"What we've done is, we're putting together 20 different mobile relief units. Those are going to be vans packed with everything from cleaning supplies, first aid kits, but then we're also going to have a grill, where we're going to grill out - hamburgers, hot dogs, probably some turkey burgers too, and really, hope to throw block parties all over the Tri-State area," explained Lucas.
The main focus on Thanksgiving is in Staten Island because those families were hit the hardest. On Friday and Saturday, they'll be expanding their efforts to the NJ coast as well.
Liquid Church started preparing last week, collecting food and warm blankets, and they plan to work all day Friday through the weekend.
"We're so grateful to the people who have volunteered their time," said Lucas. "We've had many people donate money, financially, to help underwrite the cost of this. It is something that's from the ground up, grassroots. But you can see, people really have in their heart, a desire to help and be part of the solution, so we're really grateful."
If you are interested in helping visit liquidchurch.com.