Santa’s Elves help over 500 kids

The Bonnyville Santa’s Elves program will be bringing joy to over 500 kids thanks to all the wonderful volunteers, donors, sponsors and the Knights of Columbus. Program Chair, Gene Sobolewski says the community’s support was once again tremendous.

“We have approximately 580 kids,” looking onto the St. Louis Parish Hall, Sobolewski says, with a smile, “this is what 580 kids looks like”. The program was once again successful, “thanks to BCHS for helping with the wrapping party.” Each year, Bonnyville Centralized High School is home to the Santa’s Elves program, collecting donations and hosting a big wrapping party. This year’s wrapping party saw around 250 volunteers, of all ages, wrap the nearly 2,500 presents in under three hours.

Principal of BCHS, Corey Baker, says the volunteers never cease to amaze him, “absolutely phenomenal. I have a phenomenal staff that takes all the donations from the community and organizes it. They put it together so that we can have an event that organized, timely and certainly in the Christmas spirit.”

The Knights of Columbus also oversee the Christmas Hamper program, where over 270 families in the Bonnyville area will be delivered a proper Christmas meal and extra groceries to help them through the holiday season. 1600 lbs of food, which worked out to 361 extra groceries bags, were donated over a four hour period, during Lakeland Connect’s inaugural food drive to support the program. The groceries were sorted into bags, thanks to the Bonnyville Girls Guides who came to lend a helping hand. Both the families for the Christmas Hamper program and the kids’ for the Santa’s Elves program were up from last year, reports Sobolewski.