Imagine five days before Christmas and there is no food in the house nor presents under the tree, that was the reality facing more than 700 families in the Coachella Valley. But the week before the holidays, Santa came early to the Las Palmas Community Church.
For Martha Robledo, this Christmas was looking dismal, but her family and hundreds of others will get a full holiday experience this year, a non-profit organization, The Narrow Door and Las Palmas Community Church is opening its doors to local families who need a little help.
Robledo said, “It means a lot, it means a lot to me, to my children, to my family members that come here too because it really helps put a smile on our children’s face.”
The rooms inside the church become the ‘Christmas Store’, and while the children go to daycare the parents go shopping.
The parents are able to pick out a gift for their child at no cost to them through the help of donations from the community.
Robledo said, “There’s a lot here and we’re really thankful for the people who donate.”
David Ramirez is one of the founders of The Narrow Door, he said earlier this week the church posted about a toy shortage in this year’s drive, however, the community quickly stepped up.
Ramirez said, “All of the sudden this morning we opened up our doors there were toys at our front door and volunteers walking in.”
This all happens because of the help from over 100 daily volunteers who not only get the gifts, they wrap them and put them on the sled.
But the help goes beyond the toys, the families in the receiving end will also get all of the fixings for a traditional holiday dinner, and of course a visit with Santa.
Robledo said, “I think if places like these didn’t exist a lot of families wouldn’t have Christmas.”
The help the families receive are thanks to donations and work by volunteers, learn how to help The Narrow Door, here.