Volunteers prep for Hosea Helps' annual Christmas dinner

Hundreds of volunteers are preparing food for a massive Christmas dinner that has become an Atlanta tradition.

The 49th annual Hosea Helps Christmas Day Festival of Services will take place Christmas Day at the Georgia World Congress Center. In preparation for the holiday meal, hundreds are already peeling sweet potatoes and shredding turkey.

"The opportunity to give back to the people that may be less fortunate or may be in a difficult place. It is a great gift, especially at Christmas," first-time volunteer Gregory Powell reflected.

Everyone has a unique reason for lending a helping hand.

What an incredible legacy Hosea Williams left for our city. Executive Chef Nick Johnson remembers the civil rights leader well.

"I met him at a meeting 39 years ago, Hosea. Then I heard him on the radio doing this and I called in and I have never missed for 39 years being here on Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve to cook the food," Johnson said as his voice cracked.

The day-long event will include beauty and barber services, nail services, medical doctors and even legal services for those who need them. Organizers stress Hosea is strong all year long with social services, job training opportunities, and life skills workshops.