Chicago woman treats homeless to warm meal, free shoes for Thanksgiving

It was an unusual holiday for many Chicagoans. Rather than big family gatherings and events, people stayed home and hunkered down for the day. 

But one Chicagoan made sure those who are homeless received a good, warm meal on Thanksgiving, and more. 

Aieta Clark has committed the last few years to helping those less fortunate. Not homeless, but “friends.”

“Mr. Wayman, he definitely got you looking like Obama, he definitely gave you the Obama Mr. Wayman,” Clark said.

Free haircuts and then, styled in classic Air Jordan gym shoes. These men have a lot to be grateful for.  

“She feeds us, clothes us, bathes us, helps us get jobs when she can, don’t get no better than that,” Kenneth Porter said.

“He sent the perfect person, she’s the perfect person,” Gabriel Lofton said.

Clark provided a Thanksgiving her “friends” will never forget.

Around 3:30 Thursday afternoon, the group arrived in style at one of Clark’s safe houses on the South Side.
 
Inside, a live DJ and formal Thanksgiving meal were waiting for them.   

“I just want them to feel special, holidays not easy for nobody. Just want them to know they’re loved,” Clark said.

Many of Clark’s “friends” reside in tents at 51st & Federal. Some of them saying they’ve gone without permanent shelter for more than a decade.

Regardless, they call themselves blessed.

“It’s 21 of us under that bridge, not one person by the blessing of God caught Covid. God got his hand on us,” Porter said.

Clark says this is what Thanksgiving is all about - compassion, service and genuine love. 

“I’m grateful for all the people who support me so I can make stuff like this happen,” Clark said.

Monday through Friday, free groceries - five safe houses in Chicago.