Giving Heart feeds thousands on Thanksgiving Day

Updated: Nov. 23, 2017 at 9:13 PM EST
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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Volunteers busily prepared thousands of plates Thursday, to feed a convention center full of people.

For the 12th year, The Giving Heart hosted a Thanksgiving feast at the Greater Richmond Convention Center, a tradition in the City of Richmond.

"We want people to enjoy like they're sitting with their family, like we're a part of their family too, because for today, they're a part of our family," said LaDona Roddy, who hosted a table with her family members.

The governor and first lady were among hundreds of volunteers who helped serve and host the community.

"We're bringing people together," explained Alfreda Cheatham. ""No matter whats going on outside, what's going on inside is what the season is about."

Along with a sit-down meal, free clothing, flu shots and other resources were available to the community. For those who come back year after year, there is a renewed sense of purpose and community.

"If we could have more togetherness like this in the world, then it would be a better place," said Henry Monford, who is visiting family and brought them to the feast.

For Cheatham, it's about the genuine conversations, the moments of laughter and the chance to meet new people. The warmth in the room wasn't just from the turkey and mashed potatoes on each plate, but from the joy of those who came to fellowship.

"We can make a difference, even the little things can make a difference," said Roddy.

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