Center steps in for feasts
David Hernandez, 8, hoists a turkey on his shoulders to take home as part of the Family Resource Center's Thanksgiving giveaway. He¿s been staying in a local shelter with his mother and brother for the past month. (CHELCEY ADAMI PHOTO / November 21, 2012)
It can be hard to afford the large meal the day is centered around, especially for those going through hard times, and that’s where the Calexico Family Resource Center steps in.
Jennifer Hernandez and her two sons, David, 8, and Skylar, 14, have been at a local shelter for the past month. Despite working two jobs, she couldn’t afford a place to stay, couldn’t stay with family any longer and after moving to the Valley to live with a friend, found her family without a place to go.
However, her sons and she were upbeat Tuesday as they chose food to share Thursday for Thanksgiving at the shelter. Her son Skylar will also be celebrating his birthday that day.
“We’re thankful for the roof over our heads and the food in our mouths,” she said.
“And for toys!” her sons added.
“It can be rough but we can get through it, one day at a time,” she said.
The center has been assisting families with food for the holidays for 10 years, center facilitator Hortencia Armendariz said.
Calexico resident Guadalupe Lomeli said she was thankful and happy for the donated food that will help her provide a meal for eight Thursday.
Her granddaughter Ashley Valencia, 8, excitedly picked out canned goods from a table Tuesday during the center’s holiday food giveaway Tuesday morning.
“I’m most thankful for God, because he made all these fun days,” she said. “And for my grandma.”
Ana Tavanico was also grateful for the assistance. She’s helping raise family members after losing a family member to tragedy years ago.
“I’m giving thanks to God for all these good times that have happened even after all the bad ones,” she said in Spanish.
This was the first year the center needed to call up donors to ask for donations, but Imperial County Supervisor John Renison and investment company Kinsell, Newcomb & De Dios Inc. stepped up to provide 20 turkeys while families at Dool Elementary donated canned food for the giveaway.
“It’s just to make it easier on our families,” Armendariz said. “I just like making sure our kids are happy who are going through some hard situations.”
The Calexico Family Resource Center will be doing a similar program at Christmas time and is accepting gift and food donations. Call 760 768-3905 to donate or for more information on the program.
Staff Writer Chelcey Adami can be reached at 760-337-3452 or firstname.lastname@example.org