The Rescue Mission of Salt Lake held it’s annual Christmas Banquet for the homeless today. Until the doors opened at 11 am, the line of people waiting to get into the Christmas banquet stretched down fourth West. When they did finally open, volunteers ushered them to their seats where they could eat a warm meal and listen to the Christmas music. Chris Croswhite is the executive director of the Rescue Mission of Salt Lake. He says for many, Christmas is an especially difficult time of year.
“They have all of the memories for when they were children or when they had a spouse and they had children and they were living a normal life before their addiction or their challenges in life took that all away," he says. "So they will literally have flashbacks of what they lost. So, it is incredible difficult for them.”
He says with today’s banquet their main goal is to instill hope in their visitors and allow them to celebrate Christmas.
“If you can help a man or a woman who has no hope, who has no positive outlook on themselves or on life, and if we can instill hope into them then that is a foundational element to motivating them to want to change their life,” he says.
Santa Claus was also at the banquet, giving gifts to everyone who came. Croswhite says they’ll give away more than 10 thousand articles of clothing today.