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Latoya Green, West Columbus High School

CERRO GORDO, NC (WWAY) — Latoya Green isn’t any normal teacher at West Columbus High School. She uses her time with her students to also show them the power of civic involvement.

As a teacher of teenagers, Green says it’s important make sure they know not to “judge anyone and be willing to help people who need it.” That is why she has hosted two holiday dinners in Columbus County to feed people who lost everything in Hurricane Matthew.

The first dinner served 317 people, and in the second year she served over 400.

“So many times you do canned food drives and food drives,” she says, “but if a parent can’t cook a ham or turkey it’s not going to help the family.”

Her holiday dinners are a community effort with students, staff, local businesses and residents all pitching in to help.

“You have to build relationships outside of teaching them daily,” Green says. “You have to get to know the child and know things they up against in order to educate them.”

In the end she says “that’s all I really want to do for them.”

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