Families facing hunger and an uncertain future were treated to a hot meal Friday.
“Every penny is being pinched now so to have something like this, free of charge, it has been nice,” said Jamey House.
For former mill workers, accustomed to the company of their coworkers, the event was a reunion.
“For the most part these are the only places we see them now so it is nice to get together,” said House.
“It is nice to see everybody socializing, the way things used to be,” said Richard Elwell.
In December, Jamey was laid off from lincoln paper and tissue. Now he represents the Eastern Maine Development Corporations as a Peer support worker. He and Richard, another longtime mill worker, helped provide a spaghetti supper and info session at Northern Penobscot Tech.
“To see if there are any jobs out there and make sure everybody is aware of them, I guess just to help and assist everybody that’s laid off,” said Richard.
Servers were prepared to feed 300. All the food was donated, then prepared by students in the schools culinary arts program.
“I like helping people so when I come in here I work like I mean it,” said Kelsey Moody.
Whether they received a full plate, helping hand, or a moment of levity, attendees left with a sense of gratitude and faith that the community will endure.
“There is hope.”