ELMIRA, N.Y.(WENY)-- Catholic Charities of Elmira held their annual Community Christmas dinner Wednesday afternoon at the Elmira community kitchen from 2 - 3 p.m. The charity organizes three major holiday meals every year for those who are unable to cook and or provide for themselves. The meal is free and everyone who walks through the doors of the community kitchen and they were greeted with warm welcomes and holiday cheer. The volunteers who come back every year say they feel as they get more out of it than they could ever give.

"I started this about 10 years ago because there comes a time in your life when it's time to give back and the very first day I was here, I went home with more than I gave and it brought me back time after time," says Mary Churchill, Dinning Room Host. "The food bank of the Southern Tier estimates that 73,000 people in our area are food insecure, so certainly that's our first need, but many of theses people come together for Christmas cheer. And this is a warm welcoming friendly environment for them to come to." 

The Elmira community kitchen is constantly providing meals for those in need in the Elmira area and will host their next big holiday meal on Easter. To learn more about how you can volunteer and or help out at the next holiday dinner, click here.