Non-Profit Needs Help with Christmas Dinner

By Forrest Saunders, Reporter

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By Forrest Saunders

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - A non-profit that helps local kids needs some help itself.

Each year, since 1997, the Henry Davidson Youth Center has been serving a huge Christmas dinner, feeding hundreds of people. Their next one is this Saturday. An estimated 700 are expected to show up to fill stomachs, grab a bag of groceries and get a gift for their kids.

"This time of the year, families don't have any money. We're trying to get them presents and feed them a good meal," said volunteer, Mary Fox.

That goal is proving more difficult than usual, this year. The center is short on food supplies and volunteers. Officials blamed the flood of '08 which forced them to relocate their headquarters.

"We opened up the doors on October 1st. We are back in the community, new. I think that a lot of people don't realize we're here yet," said Tammy Mims, Youth Center Director.

Mims estimated they need ten more turkeys and ten more hams, cooked and ready for dinner. She’s hoping the public can step-up. But if not, they'll have to cover costs by cutting into their youth programs.

"That money would come out of their dinner meals and activity funding for them," said Mims.

Mims said they also need about 40 volunteers to get prepped for the meal. Right now, they have about ten, filling take-home grocery bags and wrapping toys.

"We've got eight boxes of gifts. Just need to get them wrapped for the kids," said Fox.

The Saturday dinner is at Metro High School, from 11 a.m. to two p.m. If you want to help the H.D. Youth Center with food or volunteers, call this number: (319)-981-4684.

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