Bea Gaddy center receives donations for Thanksgiving dinner

Cynthia Brooks, executive director of the Bea Gaddy Family Center in East Baltimore, opened the mailbox Tuesday and found a stack of letters with donations. She said she has not seen so many checks in months, adding that many donors have dropped canned food at the center's doorstep as well.

Just a few days ago, Brooks faced the possibility of turning needy people away because the center's supplies were dwindling, its phones were disconnected for lack of payment and donations had dropped significantly. Volunteers were wondering how they would help the nearly 50 people who come to the center every day.

Brooks said that after The Baltimore Sun ran an article Monday on the center's plight, the public responded immediately.

Now the phone bill is paid and she is receiving offers from numerous individuals and organizations willing to help with the charity's 29th annual Thanksgiving dinner.

"Our donations have really increased and you would not believe the amount of food one article in The Sun has generated," said Brooks, the daughter of the late city councilwoman who founded the center. "We are doing a lot better than we were last week. A little publicity helped us a lot."

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