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Christmas Tradition Celebrates Gift of Giving

SCRANTON, Pa. — Hundreds of people lined up inside St. Mary’s Center in Scranton to take home some food and clothing for their families. “With...

SCRANTON, Pa. -- Hundreds of people lined up inside St. Mary's Center in Scranton to take home some food and clothing for their families.

"Without this, my kids aren't gonna have a Christmas," said Shronda White said.

The holiday season is a time for families and feasting, gifts, and giving.

For those who can't afford to put a holiday meal on the table for their family or buy a gift for their children, a little help goes a long way.

"You don't think about that. This is just an extra meal on top of your regular grocery bill. There's toys to get for kids. There's all kinds of extra expenses around the holidays. So, this is just trying to relieve a tiny bit of that stress," said President and CEO of Friends of the Poor Meghan Loftus.

"There's a lot of people in this world that need help that don't want to ask for help, and these programs make you feel comfortable," added White.

White has two kids. She plans to bring home new pajamas for them, plus all the fix-ins for a holiday meal.

"I got into a bad car accident, so I can't really work because I have a neck injury. So, I'm out here doing everything possible, standing in lines for five, six hours just so my kids can have a Christmas, and I accomplished that," White said.

They've got the essentials like eggs and bread, but they also have holiday specials like apple and pumpkin pie. Friends of the Poor expect to feed 1,800 families, about 9,000 people, this year.

The Friends of the Poor have been holding this event for about 30 years.

We spoke to one man who says this is his first year here.

He said, "I always worked all my life, now I'm on disability, and things are tough. Things like this really help people like us."

For the Friends of the Poor, this is their favorite gift to give all season long.