Raheem DeVaughn
**FILE** Raheem DeVaughn (Shevry Lassiter/The Washington Informer)

A young lady who goes by the name Versace was serenaded by R&B artist and D.C. native Raheem DeVaughn on Nov. 14, which just happened to be her birthday and the day of a great feast for the homeless. She danced in circles as the crowd sang the traditional version of the birthday song and Stevie Wonder’s version.

“Just because people are displaced or having a hard time doesn’t mean they are not entitled to the finest of meals and entertainment,” DeVaughn said.

Versace, along with about 100 other homeless citizens, enjoyed a grand Thanksgiving feast consisting of baked turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, macaroni and cheese, green beans, vegetable medley, butternut squash soup, sweet Hawaiian rolls, banana pudding and cupcakes.

Everyone filled their stomachs with food from Campus Kitchen, prepared by Chef Anthony Mickens and donated by volunteers in the community.

“This year, 21 turkeys were donated,” said Mickens, who has cooked for this event for the past four years. “I have a team of five volunteers and it took us two days to cook all the food.”

Cheerfully serving the homeless were volunteers from Love Life Foundation, Friendship Place, The Black law students association, Akoma, and Distant relatives organizations.

“We usually network with Love Life when they have events,” said Alma Hammah, founder of Akoma. “We bring toiletry bags with socks, mouthwash, toothpaste, toothbrush, and a snack so they will have something to take with them after they eat dinner.”

Following the meal was a mini concert by DeVaughn, founder of Love Life.

“Activities like this are very important to make sure we restore their dignity,” DeVaughn said. “Letting them know that they still matter. They are still a part of this country, this neighborhood, and this corridor.”

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WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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