Three Wide Foundation makes its debut, vows to fill needs

Published 12:00 am Sunday, December 24, 2017

By Spencer Dixon

The Three Wide Foundation hosted its second annual Christmas luncheon at First Presbyterian Church on Thursday. The Christmas luncheon offered a meal, a chance to meet Santa Claus, gifts for children and canned goods for families to take home.

Steve Thomas, organizer of the event, explained the luncheon’s origins: “Last year, I went to Communities in Schools to ask what happens during the Christmas break when kids don’t have school.” Thomas learned that children cannot receive the same support over breaks because children are outside of Communities in Schools’ reach. “Once we learned that, we wanted to do something to help,” said Thomas.

Last year’s event was specifically designed for Overton, but this year it was expanded to cover Isenberg Elementary, Koontz Elementary and Knox Middle School as well. The expansion was requested by Overton to assist the other schools that flow into Knox Middle School.

On arrival, guests were welcomed with a turkey lunch served with mashed potatoes and green beans. Following the meal, children were able to select a gift, donated by members of the three congregations, from under the tree. Before heading home, families had the opportunity to pick canned and boxed goods to take home as well.

The lunch served around 200 people who were all in good spirits. “It’s nice being around a lot of people, it’s a warm feeling,” said Tiffany Robinson, a student in attendance. “I love it.”

This year’s event was a first for the newly established Three Wide Foundation. The organization plans to continue the Christmas luncheon as well as expand its offering to the community. “We want to continue to grow and develop, so we can eventually help these kids get a higher education,“ said Thomas.

The event was made possible by a partnership between First Presbyterian Church, First Methodist Church and St. Paul’s Lutheran Church. Each church sponsored one school: First Presbyterian sponsored Overton, First Methodist sponsored Isenberg, and St. Paul’s Lutheran sponsored Koontz.