DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — It has been another year of hardship as many families continue to struggle during the COVID-19 pandemic; however, organizations like the Salvation Army are not stopping their efforts to make sure everyone is taken care of this holiday season.

“To meet human need, without discrimination, to whoever comes through our doors. It’s why we do what we do,” Maj. Gayle Senak, administrator for the Salvation Army Dayton Kroc Center, said.

The Salvation Army hosted its annual Christmas meal giveaway on Wednesday, December 22, 2021, serving more than 3,000 families in need. People received a turkey, a gift card for food, and those over 55 got a blanket. Something that always makes members of the community feel special.

“It’s truly a blessing and truly grateful for most of us receiving this blessing. And it’s nice there is an organization like this to help those that are less fortunate than others,” Sandra Dorsey said.

The volunteers also get something out of this event. Barry Mancz has been working for the Salvation Army for more than 30 years. He said it is always an honor to serve the community and help the organization fulfill its mission.

“The thing that I so appreciate, which I probably don’t deserve, is the grace that people show to us, as volunteers, when they receive a gift card and then wish us a Merry Christmas,” Mancz said.

All of this could not be done without the help of everyone giving back throughout the holiday season.

“The people wonder, when they put the one dollar in the Christmas kettle or five dollars, what does that do? And that really helps provide for what we’re able to do today,” Maj. Senak said.