Pictured above: Santa and one of the many families joining ASYMCA 29 Palms for Holiday Joy 2020.
Each year, the Armed Services YMCA Twentynine Palms Branch holds a toy giveaway for our Junior Enlisted families. The purpose of this event is to be able to provide brand new, unwrapped toys for our Military families to pick up for their children for Christmas.
A big thanks to the many generous donors to the ASYMCA 29 Palms Branch, we received enough toys for each family to take home 4 gifts per child along with stuffed animals and stocking stuffers! This brought many warm feelings to our Military families on Saturday, December 19th. One of the participating military spouses shared;
“Thank you so very much for all you do! Since having our little girl, Christmas seems to be an especially difficult time of year monetarily, and Holiday Joy has made it possible for us to make Christmas special for her, and also helps us in keeping her entertained for the rest of the year! So blessed by you all… Thank you!”
We couldn’t have pulled off such a safe and successful event without the help of our many military and civilian volunteers! Weeks leading up to the event, our volunteers helped unload deliveries and sort toys, but the biggest help of all was setting up the Branch facility courtyard for Holiday Joy and the all-day Saturday event itself! Among the many volunteers we had that day, our Marine and Sailor volunteers acted as “personal shoppers” for our families. They assisted the families with their numerous toys and delivering their gift choices to their vehicles.
Each family also received a beautiful handmade blanket or quilt. We had refreshments available for each of the guests, and Santa even joined in on the fun, passing out candy-canes and posing for pictures!
Operation Holiday Joy 2020 was a huge success! By the time Christmas Eve rolled around, the ASYMCA 29 Palms Branch had served nearly 300 military families. Our donors, sponsors, Branch staff, volunteers and the families we serve are all blessed and thankful for the experience, and look forward to next year’s Holiday Joy event!
A Personal Shopper Marine Volunteer assisting one of the guests while she picks out toys for her children.
The many toys received from our generous donors!
And even more!
Handmade desks donated by Desert Springs Church in Palm Desert.
Board Member Jim Irwin (left) with our Marine Volunteers.
One of our staff members, Miros (right) and dedicated volunteer Deeanna (left) assisting our guests as they check in.
Yucca Valley Sunset Rotary handing out Holiday Baskets as guests drive through.
Bang Energy Drink was on site handing out cases to the Military and their families.