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Calling all summer Santas: Join The Immokalee Foundation in supporting families in need this ...

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Date: 2021-07-22 05:03:45

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The goal of The Immokalee Foundation’s Summer Santas program is to provide gifts and resources to families who do not have the means to celebrate Christmas.

The goal of The Immokalee Foundation’s Summer Santas program is to provide gifts and resources to families who do not have the means to celebrate Christmas.

The holidays are about spreading joy and the spirit of giving, but why wait until then? Christmas may still be six months away, but Santa Claus is already busy at work for the holiday season, and we are too. This month, The Immokalee Foundation is making it possible for everyone to follow in Santa’s footsteps through its Summer Santas program.

The goal of Summer Santas is to provide gifts and resources to the families of at least 50 children whose families do not have the means to celebrate the holidays. Many of our students’ parents labor in the farming fields and packing houses and face challenging conditions with limited resources for anything other than the basic necessities.

“The holidays can be stressful for families who cannot afford gifts for their children,” said Amber Barr, program services director for The Immokalee Foundation. “The foundation helps to ease this stress by providing gifts and support to the entire family.”

For many of the past recipients, the experience was something they will cherish for years to come. “The gifts were life-changing for me and my family. From the bottom of my heart, I say thank you,” said student Gabriel.

“It helped out my mom financially and she is grateful for that,” said sixth grader Dinmar.

This year, we are starting early to make sure every young person on our list can truly experience the Christmas spirit.

“As a Summer Santa, you will experience the joy of making a child’s holiday more memorable than possibly ever before,” said Melissa Phillips, vice president of philanthropy at The Immokalee Foundation. “By pledging your support early, you’re helping us touch the greatest number of families in December.”

The holiday season can be a painful time for many Immokalee families. By participating, you’ll get an early dose of holiday spirit, along with the promise of a positive impact on a family in need. Your contribution provides something even more meaningful than presents under a tree — you’re helping create memories.

“Being able to have Christmas with my family has made us become closer together,” said Genise, parent of a The Immokalee

Foundation student. “Seeing the smiles on each other’s faces when opening gifts has truly warmed my heart.”

Every participating family will have at least one child enrolled in one of The Immokalee Foundation’s programs. One of the major attributes of The Immokalee Foundation is the extensive educational opportunities it provides to more than 1,100 children each year.

Through the generosity of the local community and businesses, The Immokalee Foundation is able to provide students with real-world experience in their chosen careers and help them develop the professional skills and knowledge they need to succeed.

To put yourself on the “Nice List” and participate in our Summer Santas program, contact Amber Barr at 239-657-2461 or Amber.Barr@immokaleefoundation.org.

The Immokalee Foundation provides a range of education programs that focus on building pathways to professional careers through support, mentoring and tutoring, and life skills development leading to economic independence. To learn more about The Immokalee Foundation, volunteering as a career panel speaker or host, becoming a mentor, making a donation, including the foundation in your estate plans, or for additional information, call 239-430-9122 or visit ImmokaleeFoundation.org. ¦

Noemi Y. Perez, president and CEO of The Immokalee Foundation, can be reached at noemi. perez@immokaleefoundation.org.