For more than 30 years, Dana Hall students, faculty and staff have collected the trimmings of a traditional Thanksgiving feast, along with cash donations to buy frozen turkeys, and donated “turkey boxes” to Union United Methodist Church in the South End to be given out by the church’s food pantry.
Angela Macedo, director of Community Service Programs and physics teacher, oversees the turkey box collection. “There are so many ways to participate,” she said. “Community members can donate a can of peas or offer a raffle item to help raise money to buy turkeys. The Buildings and Grounds team loads the food into Dana vehicles. Every year, a group of 20–25 students and employees deliver the food to the Union United Methodist Church Food Pantry. I love that it is an all-community effort!”
The Dana Hall Archives estimates that our relationship with Union United Methodist Church began in November 1982 or 1983. It started with a Dana employee named John Washington, who worked in housekeeping/grounds, and was a member of the church, said Archivist Dorothy DeSimone.
A November 1981 donation went to the New England Home for Little Wanderers. However, a caption in a November 1984 article said, “Once again, Dana students donated food to the Union United Methodist Church.”
“That’s why we’re thinking 1982 or 1983,” DeSimone said.
At Thanksgiving Convocation held on Tuesday, Nov. 21, CSAB tri-heads C. Hill ’18, T. Perroncello ’18 and L. Flennikan ’19 presented Pastor Jordan Harris of Union United Methodist Church with a check to purchase turkeys to accompany the turkey box donations.
Pastor Harris announced that Union’s food pantry will serve 300 families full Thanksgiving meals this year, which is a record. “This would not be possible without the generosity and hard work of all of you,” he told students. He reminded the Dana community that 1 in 10 people in the U.S. still suffer from food insecurity, and 1 in 6 are children. “Let that be our call to action—our starting place—so that we can do more work together and put an end to these numbers.” He then invited students and faculty to call out the names of people they are grateful to have in their lives.
Convocation concluded with a school-wide singing of the Alma Mater. Classes will resume on Tuesday, Nov. 28.