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Local Meal Prep Delivery Service Partners with OC’s United Way and NFL Player Casey Hayward’s Foundation To Donate 325+ Thanksgiving Dinners

November 25, 2020 3 min read

Haywards Hands Foundation OC United Way My Healthy Penguin

During tough times, individuals, organizations and communities come together to help one another and remind all of us that we are greater than our individual parts. That’s precisely what local meal prep company,My Healthy Penguin —based out of Rancho Cucamonga —has done by sharing the generosity of Thanksgiving through a unique community driven event that ended with big smiles and full bellies. 

On November 16th, 2020, My Healthy Penguin —a local meal prep company that delivers fresh, healthy, ready-to-eat meals —partnered withOC United Way, NFL Los Angeles Chargers Cornerback, Casey Hayward and hisHayward’s Hands Foundation.The mission was simple: give back and provide delicious, healthy Thanksgiving meals to families in need.

The event was a rousing success with over 325 individual ready-to-eat Thanksgiving meals donated to 65 low-income families for the Holiday season —leading to smiles across the board and festive, feel-good energy. Due toMy Healthy Penguin’s commitment to the power of community through sustainable eating, ethical food practices and giving back, the event was a bright spot during a tense year for many people. 

CEO and founder Christine Lopez, along with her team, came together after hours to prepare, package, and deliver the meals with a smile on their face and proud to support their local community. Christine Lopez expands on the vision for the event: 

“2020 has been such a tough year for everyone. When the OC United Way reached out to us, we were ecstatic to be a part of an event with amazing partners like Casey’s foundation and the Magnolia School district. Seeing the smiles on these families' faces warmed my heart!”


With an upbeat attitude and the feel-good-energy that comes with giving back during tough times, the team brought the food in a refrigerated van, pictured below and gave each family five Thanksgiving meals and a delicious pumpkin pie —all created with natural, local and sustainable ingredients. Talk about a win, win.

Casey Hayward, United Way OC, My Healthy Penguin Thanksgiving Drive Thru Donation

Due to COVID-19’s precautions, the event was held drive-thru style and creatively organized. All volunteers were temperature checked, social distance and asked to wear gloves and masks throughout the day’s festivities. The drive-thru event was seamlessly broken down into three sections:

  • For every donation that came through, the team purchased the popular picture bookThank You Omu!For each family. This book tells the story of Omu’s delicious stew and the generosity that makes the Thanksgiving season unlike any other.

  • Casey Hayward, CEO of OC’s  United Way and Superintendent of theMagnolia School District passed out My Healthy Penguin’s Thanksgiving Dinners to each family in their cars using a drive-thru style.

  • A photoshoot opportunity showcasing that even during tough times, nothing says Thanksgiving like generosity and bringing forth good for people in need with a smile.

While there is no doubt the year has been difficult for many individuals, families and local companies, this successful event was a reminder of the human spirit which thrives off generosity, compassion and giving. A reminder that we can all do our part, in small ways, to help our neighbors even during times when we must remain socially distanced.

Casey Hayward, United Way OC, My Healthy Penguin Thanksgiving Drive Thru Donation

My Healthy Penguin,  based out of Rancho Cucamonga, was born in 2015 after CEO and founder Christine Lopez was diagnosed prediabetic and knew she had to make a change —which came in the way of creating healthy, delicious meals —portion controlled and altered recipes. As others asked her to make them meals, the vision was officially born.

Five years later, the company continues its mission to provide a healthy, sustainable solution to meal prepping and weight loss in the Inland Empire and Southern California while being a key pillar of the community. Learn more about My Healthy Penguin  here.

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