For four years, Nichols School has hosted Buffalo's First Thanksgiving on campus, welcoming over 100 refugees new to the Buffalo area for their first Thanksgiving dinner alongside staff from Journey's End Refugee Services. The tradition continued on Saturday, November 9 as Nichols students, faculty, staff and SAGE Dining team worked to prepare food, decorate the Rand Dining Room and the new Student Commons, and share a warm meal and a fun afternoon.
Nichols Upper School's community service coordinators Kevin Powers and Caitlin Crowell thanked the students and faculty members who volunteered for the event and shared remarks about the group's animated spirit, love for home and helping these families who are new to Buffalo find a sense of security in the community.
Journey's End volunteers worked with Nichols' SAGE Dining team and student volunteers to create a plentiful menu, blending traditional Thanksgiving food like turkey, potatoes and vegetables with beef kabobs, steamed whitefish, Mediterranean salad, hummus and baba ganoush.
This was the first year that Nichols has hosted the event with the expanded dining space in the Student Commons. The combined facility allowed more space for families with children to play and read, in addition to common tables for families to gather and eat.
"This event means so much to us because our refugees have been through so much to get here to Buffalo," Andy Cammarata, Mission Integration and Community Outreach Manager for Journey's End, said. "For these families who have left their homes and had to come to a new place, and find a welcome hand in a place like the City of Good Neighbors, is special. This event is great because we get to share with these families the tradition of our Thanksgiving, share a meal with them, and bring the community together."
Thank you to everyone who played a part in making this event a wonderful experience!