Thanksgiving Baskets Spark Holiday Spirit

The aroma of a warm Thanksgiving turkey, the sweetness of cranberries and the spice of pumpkin pie are some sensations that come to mind when thinking of Thanksgiving.

Folks look forward to spending time with family, expressing what they’re thankful for, and of course, enjoying the abundance of good food.  However, not everyone has a Thanksgiving meal available to them. For those families, Dominican and partner agencies provided the menu.

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Eager to give, juniors Julia Oubre and Alexa Schexnayder help carry baskets to Alumnae Hall on Friday, Nov. 17 to build the donation collection. These baskets filled with corn, stuffing, sweet potato and desserts were brought to the Gert Town Community Center and handed out to families in need.   photo by Kathryn Valldejuli

During the month of November, the Dominican student body collected food to fill 88 Thanksgiving baskets filled with essential Thanksgiving food such as stuffing, sweet potatoes, rice, desserts and more to provide 700 meals for families in Dominican’s surrounding community.

“The importance of donating these baskets is to create an awareness that there are people in our own community – in fact, our neighbors – who don’t have a meal for Thanksgiving,” said Ms. Claire Gallagher (’04), campus minister.

Dominican partnered with St. Rita Parish, Xavier University and Mary Queen of Peace School in Mandeville to collect these food items to give to families at the Gert Town Community Center.

This year, Dominican received help from other organizations to complete the perfect Thanksgiving baskets. The Retired National Football League Players Association donated $25 gift cards from a local grocery store for each family. Also, Leidenhemier Baking Company donated fresh bread.

“The Thanksgiving baskets are a great way to get the whole school involved in bringing so much joy to multiple families during this holiday season,” said senior Emily Douglass, president of the Christian Leadership Counsel.


With an abundance of food donations, Alumnae Hall is filled as CLC, Christian Leadership Council, club officers Emily Douglass and Abby Haydel help bring the baskets to be delivered. “Serving the community is CLC’s main focus throughout the school year,” said Douglass.  photo by Kathryn Valldejuli

Along with the joy of being able to help others, this donation drive elicits excitement from the student body for this holiday season. This year, DHS surpassed expectations and fed hundreds of families in the community. Each year, this effort makes senior Miriam Waguespack feel proud. “The Thanksgiving basket drive makes all of at DHS feel proud knowing we’re helping others.”


  • Kathryn Valldejuli