As the doors to the San Antonio Event Center opened last Thursday morning, hundreds of moms, dads and grandparents facing financial hardship filed into the building, eager to pickup toys from the Salvation Army Angel Tree program.
Christmas will be a little brighter for many San Antonio families, thanks in part to CPS Energy employees who donated and distributed gifts for more than 900 children through the Salvation Army Angel Tree program. For many children, the gifts they receive through the program will be the only ones they open on Christmas morning.
“Thank you from the bottom of my heart,” exclaimed Joyce, a first-year family recipient. “Money is scarce this year, so this is a true blessing for me and my kids.”
The Salvation Army first began the Angel Tree program close to 100 years ago. Donors and volunteers from companies like CPS Energy make it possible for Christmas to happen for thousands of children each year. This year, it helped 2,700 families and 7,000 children in the San Antonio area.
“It’s really amazing the support we’ve had from CPS Energy,” said Lt. Jana Griffin of the Salvation Army. “When you have 7,000 children that need gifts for Christmas, you can’t do it all by yourself. The generosity of CPS Energy employees to support 900 kids is invaluable. We are so grateful for the donations and volunteer work CPS Energy has done to make this program a success.”
After a month of collecting gifts, “It was heart-warming to see the truck loads of toys, bikes, books and clothing donated by our employees,” said Lori Johnson, director of corporate responsibility.Contributions nearly doubled from last year, she noted.
Check out this video of the event:
Numerous employees also were on hand at the San Antonio Event Center to help sort and distribute gifts to grateful families.
“As a kid I was helped by the Salvation Army,” said Juan Menchaca, a CPS Energy lineman, “so it is a privilege for me to help others now. It’s such a great feeling to give back and see how appreciative the families are.”