Filling Santa’s Sleigh

On Wednesday, December 5th, Arizona Helping Hands (AHH) held our third annual Fill Santa’s Sleigh event. This event welcomed the community to our new facility at 3110 East Thunderbird Road, Phoenix, AZ and asked participants to bring toys in support of our 20th Annual Holiday Toy Drive.

More than 200 attendees joined in the festivities which included catered food by Sidewalk Noshers dessert by the Cheesecake Factory as well as frosty beverages donated by Pourmasters. Santa was on hand to accept toy donations which more than filled the AHH 20’ box truck, aka Santa’s Sleigh.

The evening also celebrated the 20th Anniversary of the organization’s founding by Kathy and Judge Paul Donaldson. A testimonial about the important work AHH does every day by a foster family had many in tears. Arizona Helping Hands is the state’s largest provider of basic needs to the 15,000+ kids in the foster care system. From beds and cribs to clothing, diapers, birthday gifts, back to school supplies and more, we step up every day to help these boys and girls feel better about themselves. We give hope to the family and work diligently to bring joy to children who have been victims of abuse and neglect.

Over the coming week, the AHH elves will use these donated toys and thousands more collected from local businesses, schools and service groups in our Holiday Toy Drive. On December 14 and 15 more than 6,000 children will receive a toy package to place under the tree this year, thanks to our work.

There was also a special presentation during the event. Randy Nelson presented a check from area Great Clips salons for $14,541, which was raised during a one-day benefit for the AHH Holiday Toy Drive. These funds were generated by a donation of $1 from every haircut on Saturday, November 17th.

Toys are always needed to fill the requests at AHH, during the holidays, as well as year-around through our Birthday Dreams program. Those interested in putting smiles on the faces of children in foster care, kids who don’t smile enough, are encouraged to contact us for ways you can help.

In this Holiday Season, and all year long, everyone can do something. That Barbie doll or Candyland game might not seem like much, but for some children it is the most marvelous gift ever.

Dan Shufelt is the President & CEO of Arizona Helping Hands, the largest provider of basic needs to Arizona’s children in foster care. Learn more about the Organization atwww.azhelpinghands.org and contact Dan at dshufelt@azhelpinghands.org

CHANGE A LIFE TODAY

As long as children are abused and neglected, and as long as drug and alcohol addictions riddle our society, there will be a need for foster care. Whether you need a hand or want to lend one, get in touch.
Together we can make a difference.