Warm Meal Served by Hope Enterprises and TLC in Williamsport

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- Volunteers who receive support from organizations in Lycoming County spent time on Thursday preparing a warm meal for others in their community.

There was a lot of food and it took about a dozen volunteers to prepare it. Some of the volunteers who are now serving the meal helped make it Thursday morning at the food bank in Williamsport.

Mackenzie Howe and Mike Colby aren't just cooking partners, they're friends. This duo and about a dozen other volunteers from Hope Enterprises and TLC, a women's transitional living center in Williamsport teamed up to make a meal at the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.

"Everyone just gets their hands in, ready to cook, ready to provide for other people," said Abigail Eschbach, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.

Together the group is called Friends United Network or FUN.

"Hope and TLC -- Transitional Living Center -- actually sat down together and were talking about some of the barriers that some of their women face in their community and they are actually pretty similar to what adults with disabilities face, a lot of the stigma, and it's difficult to find opportunities and for people, maybe, to open their minds and open their hearts," Mackenzie Howe said.

For the next few weeks, the groups will come together once a week to learn and provide support for one another.

"It's fun. It gives us a chance to get out and to focus on the mission and to get people out and about and try new things," Howe said.

"I really like the cooking class. It helped me a lot with people, make food and feed lots of people," said Jerry Dincher, Hope Enterprises, Inc.

The volunteers' hard work here will help provide a meal for over 60 people at American Rescue Workers.

Cherita Burley is staying at TLC and for her, this is an opportunity to support her community.

"It's nice to know that I'm actually a person in need and I'm able to give back to somebody else in need. That's a great feeling," Burley said.

"And be able to share the love of food, break bread together, be able to all cook together. It's a labor of love, that's what it is," Eschbach said.

​​​​​​​The food will help feed about 60 people in Williamsport.

The group hopes to do it all again next week for another nonprofit in Williamsport.

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