A Time for giving

The warmth and generosity longed for in the holiday season were nowhere more evident than at Malibu United Methodist Church on Thanksgiving, where 130 homeless and needy were served a traditional turkey feast by members of the Malibu interfaith community.

Workers from the Malibu Labor Exchange and their families, and clients of Portals and Di Di Hirsh mental healthcare facilities received bus tokens to attend the dinner from transportation coordinators Chuck and Dorothy Green.

For the first time in its three-year history, clothing distribution was added to the celebration. Teens from the youth groups of Malibu Jewish Center & Synagogue and from Malibu Methodist coordinated the drive. Malibu Girl Scout and Brownie troops tirelessly sorted the items on the day of the event.

Attendees dined on placemats crafted by youngsters from Malibu Methodist Preschool and from Children’s Creative Workshop. Sheryl Sher rounded up decorations and supplies and coordinated the feast of family recipes. To ensure that service of the roasted bird, moist stuffing and delectable gravies went smoothly, Michael Wilson supervised onsite.

Janet Ettinger came aboard the effort early to enlist the many volunteers who gave of their time. Vocalist Lovia Pitts and pianist Ted Cannon opened the entertainment portion of the program. Magician Benjamin Hoffman cast a spell on young and old alike. The sounds of jazz saxophonist and keyboardist Steve Cole filled hearts.

Cannon accompanied the real crowd pleaser, a group of young girls who performed a wand-dancing routine. When entertainers began “God Bless America,” the assembly stood up, hands on hearts, and joined in song. With tears in his eyes, one elderly man said, “I wish we could do this more often.”

Event coordinator Diane Malecha, who founded the charitable celebration, contacted outside organizations in Los Angeles and Ventura counties to invite those in need. Cleaning the kitchen after dinner with volunteers Susie Duff and Sieglinde Swerdlow, Malecha urged this reporter, “Make sure they know I didn’t do it alone! There are so many wonderful people to thank.”

The Malibu Times is the first newspaper in Malibu, serving the community since 1946.

Related Articles



Latest Articles

%d bloggers like this: