UHD Police Officers Bring Thanksgiving Cheer to Houstonians
By Mike Emery
"Turkey Day" came early for 10 Houston families. This week, the University of Houston-Downtown's Police Department continued its new tradition of helping feed families in need during Thanksgiving week.
Through a partnership with KCOH Radio and H.E.B., UHD Police officers identified community members who needed a helping hand this Thanksgiving. On Monday, Nov. 20, UHD Police Chief Michael Benford, Sgt. Trinity Delafance, Lt. Anthony Hodge and Officer Maria Ayela delivered 10 turkeys, sides and beverages to Houstonians. They also presented them with H.E.B. gift cards to purchase additional items for their holiday feasts.
"Many people in our city are still affected by Harvey or may not have the resources to have a traditional Thanksgiving," Delafance said. "This is our way of giving back."
Delafance and his fellow UHDPD officers delivered the items to one person's home in the nearby Third Ward, then ventured to KCOH studios for an on-air interview with radio host Jerri P. Beasley. At KCOH, they also presented families with their Thanksgiving meals.
"We're blessed right now," Delafance told Beasely on the air. "Others are not so fortunate, so we want to use this opportunity to help others."
"My first experience working at UHD was meeting our officers when they were working on a similar project during the holidays," Benford chimed in. "I knew right then and there that I made the right choice when I accepted the job of UHD Police Chief. Today wouldn't have been possible without our officers and without the UHD family."
This is the second year that UHD Police officers have helped others in need. Last year, the department raised money to help a family needing Thanksgiving cheer. This year, they extended their reach to 10 area families.
"Our focus is to give back, whether it's someone on campus or in the community," said UHD Police Sgt. Trinity Delafance. "We care ... not just for our students, but for Houstonians."