By Vincent Petersen, AmeriCorps member serving on the Northwest Elementary School Team generously supported by Comcast NBCUniversal.
Veterans Day is a holiday celebrated and observed across the United States that honors anyone who has served with the United States Armed Forces. The holiday came into being at the end of World War 1, which ended on November 11th, 1918. Veterans have given so much to communities around the U.S. by risking their lives for us, and on Veterans Day we show our gratitude to them. City Year New Hampshire would like to echo this gratitude by putting our communities first in the work we do.
On November 11th and 12th, 2018, City Year New Hampshire celebrated Veterans Day by giving back to our New Hampshire communities. On November 11th, we volunteered at the New Hampshire State Veterans Ceremony, and on November 12th we volunteered with various community-driven organizations across Manchester, such as the Boys & Girls Club, Families in Transition’s OutFITers Thrift Store, and Missy’s Closet at the YWCA. A group of 15 AmeriCorps members including myself volunteered our time at New Horizons in Manchester. This establishment works to help feed families in need by hosting a soup kitchen as well as a food pantry. New Horizons also provides shelter and clothing to those in need.
Our group of 15 volunteers mainly focused on the organization of the food pantry as well as the organization of clothing. The organization of the food items is vital to the food pantry because it allows families coming in to easily access the food they need. Additionally, clothing is very important when it comes to the winter months and the harsh weather conditions that come with it. Being able to provide proper winter wear to those in need makes me appreciate what New Horizons does even more. We also brought in food items that were kindly donated to New Horizons from generous community members and various grocery stores. We organized the food by pre-determined categories such as canned vegetables, rice, and Thanksgiving dinner items. We wanted to group Thanksgiving items together to make sure those in need are also able to celebrate the best Thanksgiving they can.
The message of Thanksgiving is to remember what we are thankful for and bring that to our attention before enjoying a dinner with our loved ones. Unfortunately, there are some people who have loved ones but are unable to provide a traditional Thanksgiving meal to share, including veterans. Luckily, there are organizations such as New Horizons to help accommodate for these families’ needs and allow them to have a great Thanksgiving meal. This Thanksgiving, City Year New Hampshire shows our gratitude both for organizations like New Horizons and for the veterans who have served our country.
If you or someone you know is interested in serving a year with City Year, check out our application homepage! Our next application deadline is January 25th.