L.A. Parker: Making a small difference is a big deal
Members of the city’s homeless population enjoyed dinner and a movie Thursday evening as volunteers from the Trentonian area served popular BBQ fare outside the Trenton Rescue Mission.
“Everything went well. We ended up serving about 375 people and then they had the chance to watch the movie “Black Panther,” Brian Blakely, event organizer, said.
“I can’t thank enough all the sponsors that provided food, water or financial support. It’s great to have them in our corner. It was really nice to help as many people as we did. And we had more than 100 volunteers,” said Blakely, whose fifth annual “Dinner and a Movie” continued a family tradition of helping others.
The dinner event occurred on Ewing St. as lines formed for a meal and chairs waited for movies guests.
Blakely, a lifetime Trenton resident, said his efforts have been impacted by his mother, Clara Sampson, a Jerusalem Baptist Church member who has helped the homeless for almost 35 years.
“My mother feeds a lot of people throughout the City of Trenton,” Blakely said. “She had cancer twice and when her life was spared she made a promise to do something special. She’s been feeding the homeless ever since then.”
Trenton Mayor Reed Gusciora released a statement noting that “Our city’s homeless are in dire need of community support. This event is the least that the city could do for those in need of a little extra help.”
Blakely said Thursday’s event served about 100 people less than a year ago.
“It’s hard to say that we’ve made a dent. I went to the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen (TASK) recently and the place was packed. It’s still very tough out there. I just know that we made a difference for one night,” he added.
L.A. Parker is a Trentonian columnist.
A diverse group of servers distributed meals to nearly 400 homeless clients during “Dinner and Movie” event at Trenton Rescue Mission.