By Linda T. Gracey
Ginny Helsel of Hollidaysburg hopes to make Thanksgiving a blessed holiday for 35 families in Blair and Cambria County.
Helsel is partnering with her sister's nonprofit charity, God's Connection Transition Inc. in Gaithersburg, Md., to provide groceries for designated families to prepare their Thanksgiving dinners.
The nonprofit, operated by Theresa Harvey and her husband, Arnold, provides foods, clothing and other needs for shelters, nursing homes and the homeless in the Washington, D.C. area. Information about the charity is available by visiting www.GodConnectionTransition.com.
Helsel started to help with fundraising efforts for God's Connection Transition a year ago by holding yard sales in Hollidaysburg.
She said she wanted to give back to the local area this year by giving needy central Pennsylvania families food for Thanksgiving. While some donations have come in, Helsel still needs turkeys, boxed items, canned goods, pies and desserts or money for the dinners.
First United Methodist Church in Hollidaysburg is helping by allowing the volunteers to assemble the food boxes there, Helsel said.
She said any extra donations will be given to the American Rescue Workers in Hollidaysburg or New Life Community Church in Altoona to provide meals for children in need.
The deadline for accepting donations is Nov. 18. To make a donation, call Tammy Rhoades at 659-1557,Holly Reid at 931-3657 or Lynn Plowman at 330-2912.
"There are a lot of needy people out there," Helsel said. "I want to be able to fill what needs I can."