Reaching-Out Community Services Credits The Tablet’s Bright Christmas Campaign with Holiday Help

Tags: Currents Brooklyn, NY, Faith, Inspiration, Queens, NY

By Jessica Easthope

When Sandra Bazemore walks into Reaching-Out Community Services, she knows she’s going to be treated with dignity and respect.

They’ve given her family more than food. During the Christmas season, Reaching-Out Community Services has given her and her two sons hope.

“The community is definitely not forgetting about us unfortunate and I’m very thankful for it,” she said.

Sandra’s boys are two of hundreds of children that get toys during Reaching-Out Community Services’ Operation Christmas Smiles event every year.

“With the hard times that are going on now with me and my children I was able to see their eyes open and they had something to wake up to and they had a gift I was very thankful for it,” said Sandra.

“When we get something like Bright Christmas it makes a tremendous difference in the success of that event,” said executive director, Tom Neve.

The event wouldn’t be possible without the Tablet’s Bright Christmas Campaign. Founder and executive director, Tom Neve says this year he anticipates needing more toys because there’s been a 40 percent increase in people coming through their doors.

“It’s a blessing and we’re very fortunate we get support from that, we can’t handle that with our budget here because we need to handle the core of the program which is anti-hunger,” he said.

When people walk into Reaching Out Community Services, they shop for their food at a kiosk – but the bill never comes. A receipt pops out in the back and employees get to work gathering orders.

They have the resources to feed 125 people a day, but Tom says when they’re falling behind, Bright Christmas picks up the slack, and just like Santa – delivers on a promise to give every child a toy.

“Sometimes people don’t want to hear about God they want to see God in you and that’s the evidence and that’s why I love what I do it expresses the love of God and people need that tremendously,” said Tom.

Reaching-Out Community Services will hold its annual holiday event Operation Christmas Smiles this year on December 17.