The Joseph F. Walters Boys & Girls Clubs of Hall County served more than 600 meals Thursday evening at both the Walters Club site on Memorial Park Drive and the Downey Club site on Downey Boulevard.
Mike Mendoza is Unit Director of the Joseph F. Walters Club. He stressed in an email that the meals are for the children.
“It is important to assist these families in any way we can, and we make extra efforts around the holidays because we know how difficult it may become,” he wrote. “The dinner also serves as an opportunity for members of the community to give back to youth that we believe need it the most.”
Martha Ibarra brought her 6-year-old son, Nathan, for the hot, traditional Thanksgiving meal and lively storytelling from Barry Stewart Mann.
She said the dinner means a lot for the community.
“The important thing is that we are together, united,” she said. She added that the meal was “very tasty.”
Mendoza wrote that like Thanksgiving itself, providing the dinner is a tradition.
“We have been providing a Thanksgiving dinner to our children and parents since I began my work with the clubs over eight years ago, and I’m sure it has always been done. It’s a tradition for us,” he wrote.
Mendoza noted the help provided by the Omega Psi Phi fraternity and Delta Sigma Thetto sorority.
The organizations made all the hot meals and brought volunteers.
“We are extremely thankful that we are able to have a relationship with these organizations,” he said. “Only when the people in the community step forward can all of children’s needs be addressed.”