SUNBURY — Concern for the welfare of those in the Sunbury community compelled Sonia Ammar, of the Sunbury Islamic Center, to organize a food giveaway outside the mosque on Sunday afternoon.
People began lining up at 1 p.m. in advance of the two-hour giveaway that started at 1:30 p.m.
"People are not doing good," Amar said.
When a friend told her there had been a recent uptick in home and car break-ins, "I said, that's it. We have to do something to help the community," she said. "People are hurting. People are suffering and we are all in this together."
Ammar called Sunbury Mayor Kurt Karlovich to ensure it would be fine to conduct a food giveaway outside the Islamic Center on North Fourth Street.
"He not only said OK," she said, "but he shared the news on the city's website."
The bags, all purchased by the Islamic Center, contained 15 items, Amar said, including food staples such as eggs, bread, and cheese. But also toiletries, and miscellaneous items, including detergent and sanitizers.
"I really appreciate this, said Wayne Dallman," of Sunbury, who accepted one of the blue bags.
"Do you want some extra cheese?" Ammar asked him.
Amber Neidig and her 2-year-old son, Mason, 2, stood in line, except when Mason opted to ride in his wagon.
"He's a bit shy," said Amber, of Sunbury, as she accepted a bag of food from Sonia.
The idea for giveaway came together in two weeks, Amar said.
"It happened fast thanks to people here who trust me," she said.
"There is love in each bag," she said. "It's not just a bag filled with food. We did this with care and love."
People in the line all wore facial masks and adhered to proper social distancing.