Thousands in need get free holiday feast thanks to volunteers

By: Steve Gehlbach

Updated:

ATLANTA - Thousands of people received a hot Thanksgiving meal Thursday thanks to Hosea Feed the Hungry.

More than 3,500 meals were served to those in need at the annual event at the Georgia World Congress Center.

"Man, I think it's a blessing from God. We're blessed to be around here," said Howard Furman, who was there for the first time.

They also boxed up 4,000 meals to deliver to the sick and shut-in that couldn't make it to the event.


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Hundreds of volunteers began serving early Thursday morning. 

Volunteer Velissa DeLaCruz brought her daughter to help serve for the first time.

"This is king of an eye opened for her so she can see how the world really is and what we can do," DeLaCruz said.

Hosea Feed the Hungry's CEO Elisabeth Omilami said this year there's more need than ever, but they had concerns that they wouldn't be able to reach everyone after their move to a new facility and the closing of the largest shelter in the city at Peachtree and Pine.

“The people know us, and they trust us, and they found us and our numbers are bigger than ever. You can see all the tables are filled," Omilami said. 

And it wasn't just about dinner. They also offered free health screenings. Anyone could see a doctor and there were showers and haircuts in trailers outside.

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