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'Big Mama' collects Thanksgiving food, donations from businesses

Team of Life organization receives $4,000 check from Food for the Poor

"Big Mama" has traveled South Florida for more than 30 years, collecting money and food to feed people on Thanksgiving.
"Big Mama" has traveled South Florida for more than 30 years, collecting money and food to feed people on Thanksgiving.


COCONUT CREEK, Fla. – "Big Mama" is on a mission to feed the needy in South Florida this Thanksgiving.

The Food for the Poor office in Coconut Creek was one of her many stops Wednesday, arriving in a charter bus filled with donated food.

Essie "Big Mama" Reed serves more than 30,000 people in South Florida with the help of donors.

"The heart is big," she told Local 10 News.

Food for the Poor has been on Reed's route for the past six years. This year, Food for the Poor President and CEO Robin Mahfood presented her Team of Life organization with a check for $4,000 to purchase turkeys and other food to help those who need it.

"So God is bringing people in my life that knows what it is not to have," she said.

"Big Mama" was scheduled to serve residents at the Gulfstream Apartments in Dania Beach at 1:30 p.m. Thursday. She will pick up more donations Thursday before serving an estimated 3,000 people Friday at Central Broward Regional Park.

Anyone wishing to donate may do so by contacting Team of Life at 754-422-2695 or visiting BigMamaHelp.com.

Follow Erica Rakow on Twitter @EricaRakow

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