Charities catering to the needy for Christmas

lfabian@macon.comDecember 24, 2012 

Christmas celebrations typically include family and friends gathered for home-cooking and holiday favorites.

Those who live alone, don’t have a roof over their heads or the means to prepare a special dinner can still eat a hot meal on Christmas Day.

Many Middle Georgians will leave the comforts of home to help serve strangers and those in need.

Former Macon City Council President Anita Ponder will be hosting her 17th annual holiday feast in downtown Macon, while Heritage Church is launching a new community dinner on Houston Avenue.

The Street to Success Ministry has asked local cooks to fill a pan with Christmas fixings, ready to eat, and bring it to the Heritage Church at 4116 Houston Ave. between noon and 12:45 p.m. Tuesday.

From 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., the church and volunteers will be serving up the home-cooked food.

Meanwhile, Ponder branched out from cooking in the kitchen at Molly’s Cafe to the industrial-size facility at Hepzibah Children’s Home this week.

“It’s wonderful,” Ponder said Monday while training volunteers. “It seems like each year it gets better because the partnerships keep diversifying.”

The Anita Ponder & Friends Holiday Feast will include clothing collected by G.E. Capital workers, toys for the children and free haircuts.

The event begins at 1 p.m. at Molly’s, which is on the corner of Cherry Street and Martin Luther King Junior Boulevard, but will spread to neighboring businesses such as Edward’s Barber Shop for the haircuts.

Ponder also will be raffling off free bicycles and has a couple of computers she would like to give away to folks who might have lost a job or who have another special need.

She could use plenty of extra hands, too, in case anyone wants to help.

“There’s so much to do. We do need volunteers,” she said.

Elsewhere in downtown Macon, Monday brought plenty of helpers to Daybreak where the homeless day center served a special Christmas Eve pancake breakfast and sack lunch through noon.

The Walnut Street center normally does not serve midday meals because other entities, such as the Mulberry Outreach, provide that daily service.

Daybreak will bridge the gap in the schedule during the holidays by offering sandwiches again on Wednesday, New Year’s Eve and Jan. 2.

Daybreak is regularly open between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. each Monday, Wednesday and Thursday but will close at noon New Year’s Eve.

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