Freedom and Fashion Executive Director, Laverne Delgado said it was back in October, during Domestic Violence Awareness Month when she first learned that the Kern County Alliance Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault had lost their sponsors for the holidays. While Delgado may not have a connection to the North Pole, she did have a friend at a toy company.
“We’re friends with the wonderful people at Mattel toys, so I wrote an email there right on the spot, and within ten minutes, I got a response,” Delgado said. “We made the order that day.”
It was an order for almost 500 toys, to be exact. Louis gill, the CEO of the Kern County Alliance Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault, said that this order was a huge help, since they not only try to get toys for the two shelters they oversee, but to hundreds of local families around town in need, at the request of case managers.
“Families are struggling right now, and I’m sure children are wondering if Christmas is going to happen,” Gill said. “So they’re going to get to wake up and know that they’re cherished, because people cared and wanted to make sure families were taken care of.”
Normally the Kern Alliance has a “Santa Shop” for their clients who are parents. Instead, Kern Alliance has created a wish list and checking it at least twice! Case managers then fill that wishlist according to what the child may want.
"Hope matters. and that's what it is. There's a child going, ‘maybe? Is it possible? I'll just see! I'll ask.' Then they wait and the anticipation builds. 'Did I get it?' They tear it open, and there's their wish," Gill said.
As a domestic violence survivor herself, Delgado said she sees the importance in giving back to during a year when the extra help is needed. That's why her team has sent shipments across the country.
“Generosity is what’s going to get us through a crisis, whether it’s a pandemic, or anything else for that matter,” Delgado said.
The drive thru for Kern Alliance clients will take place right here on Christmas eve at 6 a.m.