BRYAN, TX — With such a difficult year coming to a close, 2020 has inspired many to bring their community by helping others.
”I had this vision of seeing our community come together. As far as like regular people, too often we think you have to be rich or really well off to help someone who maybe has less than enough, and I just don’t believe that’s true,” said Fabi Payton, the founder of I Heart Bryan.
What began as a vision quickly spiraled into a massive community collaboration to create new traditions.
”Today, we are starting a new Bryan tradition called Turkey 911, where law enforcement are going to be delivering the meals that our community came together to provide for 75 Bryan ISD families of six,” Payton explained.
The huge amount of support from the community drove Payton to increase the number of families they would serve from 52 to 75.
”It started with a donation of 52 turkeys from a small local business called Capitol Custom Tile, and then it grew from there on the request of Councilmember Madison, and since then it has been completely funded by community member donations," Payton added.
Serving the community is the backbone of law enforcement, but it is also important for Bryan PD to connect with the community, who they consider their partners in fighting crime.
”It’s very important to us that the community trusts us. That’s one way that we take care of fighting crime. It’s a partnership between the community and us, and to do these little events, go out and meet community members one on one,” said Dean Swartzlander, the Assistant Chief of Bryan PD.
These frontline workers want the community to know that they are people too and are utilizing their gift of community engagement.
”Everybody has a gift. Everybody has an ability. Just be creative. Talk to your friends, see how you can use what you have and what gifts you have to help, doesn’t always have to be money. Sometimes it can just be you, your time, your effort, your ideas, a helping hand,” Payton said.
Two chefs from Always Cravin Pit BBQ and D’vine Cuisine used their gift to bless 450 individuals of our community with freshly cooked turkey this Christmas.