Tis The Season To Be Grateful

December 20 2021

StandUp for Kids - Orange County 

This past weekend, our Christmas party was filled with creative ways to celebrate the holidays in a way that brought all who attended, young or old, joy. The event was generously sponsored by Seabreeze Management, a local property management company based in Aliso Viejo. Their staff was invited to join us in celebrating the holiday– though they all opted to volunteer and served lunch to the youth and guests.

Seabreeze Management brought on 24 Carrots Catering, a local catering business, and fed not just our youth but staff, volunteers, guests and interns. The food was beautifully laid out and tasted equally as good as it looked. The food provided a delightful family aspect to the event.

All in attendance were seated family style, connecting with one another. New bonds were tangibly being made amongst all who ate together. The youth in our program could bring home food for themselves and their families. 

Santa took a quick break from crafting gifts at the North Pole and paid the party a visit! He rolled up in an electric bike, giddily telling us he found a way to give the reindeer a break. The staff at Seabreeze also provided beautiful stockings filled with goodies for each youth. It was the highlight of the whole event– watching each kid have their names called up to the front and be handed beautifully wrapped gifts. Their bliss was tangibly felt in the air when they were given the green light to open their presents up. One Seabreeze staff member expressed, “Wow, the aftermath truly looks like Christmas Morning amongst family. Wrapping everywhere, and youth enamored by their new goodies.” 

The community in Orange County was so good to us. We received multiple baked goods, from professional pastry chefs dropping off literal works of art to cute little girls baking brownies and cupcakes.  Lucky 13 Sweets was one of the local bakers to donate her time and labor to our party. They brought in 200 sugar cookies and decorating supplies to allow all the youth in attendance to decorate their own cookies.

The success of this event was indeed a COMMUNITY effort. Compass Empowerment Society, a local non-profit that helps empower women and children, donated time and supplies to give the youth crafts and people to connect with. They facilitated the sugar cookie decorating and a DIY stockings craft for the youth.

Another crowd favorite was when local small business, Mauve Roots, hosted a floral, dried ornament craft with the youth. It was sweet watching teenage boys find glee in using floral petals as confetti and making ornaments to take to their families.

The event was full of many opportunities to connect and find joy in honor of the holidays. We want to say thank you again to all those who contributed to making the day so very special for our youth and their families! 

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