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NDNU's 14th Annual “Thanksgiving Picnic in Golden Gate Park”

A Shared Picnic with San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park Homeless

Belmont, CA, November 29, 2007 — Rather than spend a quiet Thanksgiving Day watching football or fighting over who gets the turkey leg, about 50 NDNU students, faculty, and staff will organize a community picnic to share with the 350 - 450 homeless individuals who call San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park home.

NDNU’s 14th Annual “Thanksgiving in the Park” community picnic sponsored by the University’s Sociology and Psychology Departments will take place in the Stanyan and Haight Street area of Golden Gate Park between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Even the four legged friends of the homeless will benefit as VET SOS, a veterinary outreach group will be on hand to provide medical care, pet food, and supplies for the dogs that reside in Golden Gate Park with their owners.

“This is our 14th year and every year the number of NDNU community participating gets larger as does the homeless population,” said NDNU’s Professor of Sociology Dr. Cheryl Joseph. “It’s a true sharing opportunity in the spirit of Thanksgiving. But it’s also a learning opportunity for our students. The idea is for students to sit down with the homeless on a one-on-one basis and put a face to the statistics we read about.”

Funding and donations from local businesses and the University’s faculty and staff are being sought throughout November. Two days before the picnic begins, students, staff, and faculty busily prepare for the feast in the University’s cafeteria. More than two hundred and fifty turkey sandwiches with stuffing, vegetarian fare, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, pumpkin pie, fruit, water, and juices are on the Thanksgiving menu.

NDNU senior Darice Murray plans on helping at this year’s event. “I’ve always wanted to attend the picnic, but for the last three years I’ve been away playing basketball,” said Murray. “This year, I’m able to attend, and I am so excited. I think that “Thanksgiving in the Park” is a good way to learn about the public and to lend a helping hand as well.”

Donations of food and money are still being accepted for NDNU’s 14th Annual “Thanksgiving in the Park.” Turkeys are especially needed. For more information, contact Dr. Cheryl Joseph at (650) 508-3586 or cjoseph@ndnu.edu.