Notasulga families to receive holiday meal for Christmas Eve - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Notasulga families to receive holiday meal for Christmas Eve

NOTASULGA, AL (WTVM) - On Christmas Eve, the doors of Notasulga High School opened to everyone needing a hot, holiday meal. thanks to a mother's Facebook post.

Social media can be a powerful tool when you want to unite a community together to help others.

Crysten Martin-Conner is a working mom in Auburn who asked her friends on Facebook to help her provide a few Christmas meals for families in the Notasulga community. The post took off, and a few meals turned into several hundred. 

Notasulga K-12 principal Brelinda Sullen is filled with the Christmas Spirit.

"[On Christmas Eve] between the hours of 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. we will be feeding everyone who comes into the door, hundreds and hundreds, and we are prepared for them, we want to see them there," Sullen said. 

One hundred percent of Notasulga K-12 students are on free and reduced lunch. 

"A lot of my parents really don't know where their next meal is coming from," Sullen explained. 

"This is the epitome of what Christmas should be about for everyone," Martin-Conner said. 

Martin-Conner adores the students and families she has met at Notasulga.

"They are amazingly optimistic despite their circumstances and they are a moving bunch of people they are so positive and so gracious for what we are doing for them," Martin-Conner said. 

Martin-Conner gets emotional thinking about their struggle and wanted to help out, so she posted a message to Facebook.

"Some of my friends and I got together and decided we wanted to help a few families, and a few families turned into a few more," Martin-Conner said. 

Principal Sullen gratefully accepted Martin-Conner's offer and as the giving grew, decided to open up the school to serve the meals.

"That's why this is so fulfilling to me, knowing this is what our Christ would have done," Sullen said. 

"It's really what Christmas is all about," Martin-Conner added.

Parents were also able to pick up toys for their children. There was also an arts and crafts section set up for kids. 

"You know I think a lot of people take something as simple as Christmas dinner for granted,” said former Miss America Mallory Hagen, who was on hand for the event. “Sometimes we take a lot of things for granted but some people don't have a hot meal any day of the week much less on Christmas and I think that to celebrate Jesus as our Lord and savior with a hot meal and with your family is one of the best ways to spend the holiday season. Hopefully what we are doing here today is an opportunity for those people to do that as well."

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