Verplanck Elementary School helped to make Thanksgiving memorable for students.
The Manchester school's Family Resource Center teamed up with several churches to provide Thanksgiving meals for 50 families.
Full Gospel Interdenominational Church of Manchester, New River Church Community Church of Manchester, and Crossroads Community Cathedral of East Hartford all participated.
Full Gospel Interdenominational Church's World Lighthouse Missions, Inc. donated 45 of the bags.
"We are so grateful for them because they came in at the nick of time," Family Resource Center Coordinator Rachel Hyman said.
"I'm grateful for what transpired. Just a couple of weeks ago, we had families in need and no way to provide. It increases your faith," Verplanck Elementary School Principal Nicolas Jones said.
Hyman said it was divine timing. The school was on the verge of sending letters home to cancel the dinner giveaways, but was able to carry on, with help from World Lighthouse Missions, two days before Thanksgiving.
Dinner bags included a turkey, side dishes, and dessert. Workers from World Lighthouse Missions shopped for the items and personally gave bags to families.
"We're excited to be here and just be present in this moment and at this time to strengthen our community. Let them know people do care," World Lighthouse Missions Vice President Adrienne Lautenbach said.
Lautenbach said she was thankful for Big Y, Sam's Club, and BJs for their generosity of coupons and savings.
"I had set this budget and by the time we were done, because of their kindness, we met every need at 50 percent of our budget," she said.
World Lighthouse Missions has helped individual families with groceries, clothing, and furniture needs in the past and has worked with local schools, Lautenbach said.
All participants involved said they were happy to give of themselves for others.
"Giving of their time, giving of their prayers, giving of their hearts," Lautenbach said. "That's what it's all about."
Verplanck School is currently planning for a similar event for Christmas and is looking for sponsors.
Contact Hyman at 860-647-3383 for more information.