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Rivier University Sharing the Feast Project provides Thanksgiving meals for local families

This year’s Sharing the Feast project raised funds and food donations to feed nearly 500 individuals and families.

Sharing the Feast 2023

Jonathan Harper, Director of Athletics, students, and staff brought more than 350 food bags and boxes to waiting local agencies’ trucks and vans.

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Rivier University’s annual Sharing the Feast Project raised $11,426 in donations from members of the Rivier University community and scores of donated food items from Sunset Heights Elementary School families. This year’s drive will provide Thanksgiving meals for nearly 500 individuals and families. Donations were provided to Rivier’s network of non-profit community partners for distribution.

The traditional interfaith Thanksgiving Prayer Service was held on November 16, giving thanks and blessing the food and community members. The University’s athletic teams, first-year students, Campus Ministry Club members, the Student Government Association, and the Sunset Heights Elementary School community were acknowledged for their fundraising support. Representatives from the participating non-profit agencies attended the service. At its conclusion, Rivier students and staff carried the donated food bags to the agencies’ waiting trucks and vans.

“The Rivier community is happy to share Thanksgiving with its neighbors through this event,” says Dr. Hank Parkinson, Vice President for Student Experience. “We thank all who donated to the event, packed the bags of food, and attended the service, as well as our local agency partners for distributing the donations to those in need.”

Rivier’s community partner, Sunset Heights Elementary School students and staff, have participated in the Sharing the Feast Project for 34 years. Each year the school holds a food drive to support the project. A student from each grade, along with school administrators, attended the prayer service and the luncheon that followed the event.

Twelve Nashua-area agencies received donations this year including Ascentria Care Alliance, Catholic Charities New Hampshire, Corpus Christi Food Pantry, Cynthia Day Family Services, Family Promise of Southern New Hampshire, Foundation Oncology and Hematology, HIV Services at Harbor Care, Healthy at Home, Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter, New Fellowship Baptist Church Community Outreach Resource & Education Center Nashua, the Salvation Army, and Title One.