The magic happened once again on Christmas Eve as the UCNH Jaycees and friends delivered toys and cheer to almost 400 deserving children in the San Fernando Valley. We started about 3p as the volunteers started arriving. They began to suit up, then they grabbed their toy bags, and headed out into the evening with maps and directions from location to location. Most teams had a Santa and helpers. One team even had a genuine/certified Elf along to help Santa. Deliveries were made and most teams were back to Operation:Santa central by 7p. Lots and lots of food was donated by Victorios Italian Restaurant in North Hollywood for the volunteers. After arriving back at Op Santa central, teams shared stories of their deliveries and drop offs, and the excitement of Christmas was palpable in the air for these giving adults who participated in one of the most genuine Christmas charity projects in the United States.
A very big KUDOS to chairperson Liz Coopersmith for pulling off a great event. And, it was her first Operation:Santa. No wonder she's next in line to be President of the UCNH Jaycees next year.
So for now, the Santa Suits are packed away for next year and we're all getting back to our normal lives; but for a few hours on Christmas Eve, about 50 volunteers experienced the true meaning of Christmas...and in case anybody is still doubting...SANTA CLAUS IS REAL.