Volunteers hand out Thanksgiving meals to community - WNEM TV 5

Volunteers hand out Thanksgiving meals to community

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Thanksgiving is a day to gather with family and friends but not everyone is fortunate enough to have somewhere to go.

So, volunteers sacrificed time with their own families to greet people in need with smiles and handing out meals.

"What I like the most about the event is being able to see the smiles on the faces of those as they sit down to eat,” Dan Smith said.

Smith is on the Board of Directors for the International Academy of Flint, which celebrated its 9th annual Free Thanksgiving Meal.

Smith said he and everyone involved all share the same passion for giving back.

“It’s important because of the fact that there are people in the community that need assistance, but there are also people in the community who want to come out and help those who need the assistance. So the volunteers who are out here and preparing the food, they're coming out and giving back to the community who has given to them and to us,” he said.

In addition to their free meal at the IAF, each guest got to take home some personal items, some food, and some winter essentials.

Diane Thompson with the Board of Directors said the meaning behind it all is truly priceless.

"Just watching everybody enjoy themselves, you know having a good time just eating and being thankful for the day,” she said.

The meal wouldn't be possible without volunteers like Rosie Twitty who has been volunteering since the first event and looks forward to the next.

"Well I love the people, I love serving the community, it's always nice to help others out,” Twitty said.

Terry Evanish couldn't agree more. He's been here since the beginning as well and for him and his son, it’s a Thanksgiving tradition.

"It's quality time for him and I, he's a millennial so he sees a different perspective and ever since he's been coming it's great to watch him grow and mature and see people who come because they need to be here and then to assist help them, so it helps him out quite a bit,” Evanish said. 

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