On Sunday, Dec. 16, the hard working staff of Food for the Faithful provided area kids with Christmas fun. Santa, toys, crafts, and food were provided. One highlight was the family pictures that were taken with Santa, aka Larry Walker. Another was the bike raffles, won by Aubrie Gomez, Victoria Perez, and Alexa Amezcua.
The older boys’ bike that was raffled to both boys and girls was won by Gabriella Simmons. When asked how she felt about winning a bike, young Aubrie Gomez said, “It will be really fun riding a bike.”
The mood was a bit somber due to the tragedy in Connecticut among some of the adults.
“I am grateful we can provide to the kids here in Anza a wonderful Christmas, especially in light of the 19 children that will not have a Christmas this year,” said Annie Ashby, president of the community hall.
“This is our second annual community Christmas party put on by Food for the Faithful (FFTF). This year, we received donations designated for this party from the Anza Electric Co-op for $500, Cali Produce (Hector) fruit for 100 bags, Paradise Corner (Neil)100 14 burgers, Dairy Queen (Neil) 200 hot dogs, Living Hope Pastor (Kevin) $200, El Ranchito Taco Shop (Raymond & Martha Moon) $200, Candi Castorani & Family $200, Harry and Joan Hemhauser $325, Anza Uhaul Debbi Real Estate $50, Anza Valley Hardware $25, Anne and Jack Ednoff $50, Anza Thrift Store Back on the Rack $17, Western Eagle in Temecula boxes of chips, Walgreens in Rancho Mirage discounted toys that were purchased, Katherin Cadwell stuffed animals, Anza Community Hall sponsored the facility, Terriy Gormley hats,gloves,beanies, several gifts for tables, Toys for tots, and Food for the Faithful.
“My faithful volunteers that helped get ready for the past month just to do this event are Val Smith, Paige Armstrong, Shirley Kimball, Beatrice Rivera, Jennipher Thompson. Teresa Prichard and Maria Lopez. They are the driving force behind Food for the Faithful. They organized and shopped not only for this party but for the monthly food distribution.
“Our Christmas party volunteers that made it possible this year are Paige Armstrong, Chuck Hernck, Gloria Mendez, Beatrice Rivera, Mike and Lorie Sweet, Phiip Neer, Emma Hennings, Brenda Miller, Annie Ashby, Maria Lopez, Teresa Prichard, Alexa Amezcua, Terry Gormley, Lisa Cole, Kelly Gilliland, Jose Barragan, Makayla and Joshua Barragan, Marcos Villalobos, Valerie Smith and Shirley Kimball and Larry Walker, our Santa.
“A special thank you to Jane’s Cottage Hair Salon in Anza for getting Santa ready for the big event at our last minute request, and Sacred Heart Catholic Church for making Food for the Faithful possible,” said Esther Barragan, FFTF’s president.
FFTF provides for many families monthly, acting as Anza’s only food bank. They also provided free clothing as well as food to families in need. To get involved or to donate, call Esther Barragan at the church, (951) 763-5636.