Refugees enjoy early Thanksgiving meal at Society Hill community center

- “Today is one day a year that we bring together volunteers we work with and also the refugees we have and we have a big celebration and welcome them it's the most American of traditions,” Daniella Scruggs with HIAS PA said.

Thanksgiving comes early at the Old Pine Community Center in Society Hill, and for most of those invited, it is their first ever celebration of this traditional American holiday.

Sam Khan, a Syrian refugee, said, “I came from Syria eight months ago now I'm working I have 3 kids my wife and we live in the Northeast I have a job I pay my taxes I pay my bills everything is fine.”

Sam Khan and his family, among 200 refugees enjoying a Thanksgiving celebration organized by an  agency that helps refugees during their first few months in America. And after leaving his war ravaged homeland, he is most thankful this year.

“We are so excited and very thankful for America that we have a second chance.”

At a time when U.S. immigration policy is uncertain, the agency hopes to continue to bring hope to refugees and their families, especially at this time of year.

Nelson Otim, a Ugandan refugee, said, “I feel loved and mostly when I see Americans I feel love and I feel some acceptance so it gives me hope for the next day tomorrow.”

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