Volunteers surprise South Mississippi homeless with Christmas packages

Volunteers surprise South Mississippi homeless with Christmas packages

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - A group of volunteers filled stockings and offered other items to homeless individuals Saturday afternoon.

One day after the Loaves and Fishes Christmas feast, the organization had another Christmas surprise for area homeless.

Bryan Morales is the program coordinator at Loaves and Fishes. For him, the event was an unexpected surprise.

"I'm overwhelmed and they're overwhelmed," Morales said. "We thought that was our last big day, we thought today was going to be a quiet day. Then we get a group that calls us and wants to come and do this."

Morales' goal at Loaves and Fishes is to help the homeless feel a sense of family.

"I think we're giving them that home feeling," Morales said. "Giving them that love and that sense of community and that sense of place and everything. I think they're all very happy, very much at ease with everything."

Katie Fulmer helped organize the event after seeing such a need while volunteering at Operation Homeless Connect.

"My passion is helping other people, that's why I'm going for a social work masters right now," said Fulmer. "I just really have a calling to just bring a smile to other people's faces, let people know that they still matter."

Volunteers included Biloxi high school students like Avery Norwood and Xiala Cobb.

"I came out just to give back to the people because everyone should have something on the holidays, to be around people and just like, feel love," Cobb said.

"We went through a lot of hard work to collect all this and it makes me feel so great watching everyone collect their items and have a great holiday season," said Norwood.

Fulmer says the reaction made it all worth it.

"They're surprised," she said. "They're really really appreciative. They're happy that we're here."

The group filled more than 120 stockings thanks to donations from the Girl Scouts, and several groups at Keesler Air Force Base.

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