Students, faculty and staff from the University of North Texas at Dallas and a local non-profit agency were very busy the weekend before Thanksgiving, assembling and delivering food baskets complete with holiday dinners and additional provisions to last the entire week to 50 grateful families across Dallas.

The Dallas chapter of Continental Societies, Inc., an international public service organization that UNT Dallas has been heavily involved with locally in recent years, was on campus to facilitate the creation of the baskets. UNTD’s Human Services Leadership Organization (HSLO), members of the fraternity Phi Beta Sigma, and other student groups volunteered to work on the project. The Walmart of Midlothian, Texas, donated turkeys and gift certificates and members of Friendship West Baptist Church also volunteered.

“We started assembling the baskets at 9:30 a.m. and delivering them at 3 p.m.,” said Judith Nix, Administrative Coordinator of the University of North Dallas at Texas School of Human Services. “These are families that have gone through extreme hardships, we know their circumstances and what they have gone through. Many of them don’t know how they will have Thanksgiving, so for all of us packaging up this food and getting it out to them is important work.”

The volunteers were excited to greet each family at their homes. In addition to the turkeys, each basket was stuffed full of vegetables, cranberry sauce, gravy packets, rolls and desserts, among other treats.

In addition to her duties at the university, Nix also serves as the president of the Dallas chapter of Continental Societies, Inc., and coordinated the event. Dr. Sheila Lumar with the UNT Dallas School of Human Services also participated in the effort.

“The food baskets were stuffed to capacity,” Lumar said. “My heart moved as I saw each member of Continental Societies demonstrate meticulous care and passion with ensuring that each food basket could not only provide a generous Thanksgiving meal, but also provided additional food so families could have meals after the holiday. I am humbled by their unwavering spirit to help families unable to help themselves.”