CHICO, Calif. - Chico community members and leaders gathered today at City Plaza for a weekly luncheon, with the theme of "Think Pink."
The goal of the luncheons is to encourage people to spend more time in the park and feel comfortable chatting and eating with their neighbors. However, this week's luncheon also aimed to raise awareness for breast cancer.
Community Leader Teri Dubose, co-owner of Broadway Pawn, came up with the idea for neighbors to grab food from downtown eateries and meet up at the plaza to hang out and chat every week.
"A lot of people come to feel like it's more safe to come when other people are here," Dubose said.
A lot of homeless people migrate to the City Plaza Area, making it difficult for some people to visit, she said.
"They want to make sure people understand that you know the plaza is great," she said. "It's a beautiful piece of Chico and its fun to come on out here and enjoy your lunch and enjoy some time with the family its not about a homeless over-run thing, it's a fun time," she said.
Dubose also said it's not just about the homeless.
"It's not just about the homeless," she said. "It's about the criminal activity that happens and makes people feel uncomfortable to come down."
Dubose has been hosting these weekly luncheons with her community for a year and a half, but after the city's declaration of a shelter crisis, she may change her mind.
"Since the city council meeting, I have to say I was a little discouraged and even thinking about not continuing to do it," she said.
Dubose said after the amount of support she received today, she hopes to continue these meetups for the love of the community.
"This is the incentive to continue if these are all the kids and family members, community members, and children that have come over the last year and a half," she said. "This right here will keep me going."