By Lenis Rodrigues, Media Relations Staff
In the spirit of giving back, the Port Authority Police Hispanic Society (PAPHS), along with the Inwood Manhattan Little League Baseball Association, recently handed out Thanksgiving dinners to residents of Washington Heights and their families to help celebrate the holiday.
The Hispanic Society purchased the turkeys and fixings through various fundraising events, including the PAPHS Cigar Night and the PAPHS Christmas Party, while the Little League association identified the families eligible to receive the food. This year, the society served approximately 220 families, with each receiving their choice of a turkey or ham with a one-pound bag of rice and two cans of beans.
This second annual “Turkey Giveaway” was not only a way for law enforcement to give back, but to continue to strengthen the bond between Port Authority police and the people with whom they interact in the community. The event where the dinners were distributed included games and sports for children.
“The Port Authority Police Hispanic Society believes giving back is a part of moving forward. It is important to give to those less fortunate,” said Port Authority Police Officer Juan Cancel, who serves as PAPHS president. “We believe charity is a good means of attempting to bridge the gap between police and the community. “
Members of the PAPHS who attended the event included Cancel; Vice President Joe Arias; Treasurer Louie Herrera; Recording Secretary Oles Derroches, trustees Telly Simmonds, David Hunter, Juan A. DeJesus and Fabian Landa, and members Alice Ring, Richard Alvarado and Marianne Flores.
“We want the community to have a better and more positive interaction with the police. This event is one of those opportunities that can help make that happen,” added Cancel.
Port Authority Police Officer Chris Urbina helps to run the Inwood Little League association, which is a non-profit organization that, besides providing kids with a chance to play baseball, offers other after-school activities to encourage scholastic achievement.