Toys for Tots, along with Santa, returns to Loleta Union Elementary

LOLETA, Calif.(KIEM)- Christmas is just around the corner, and Santa is making some last-minute stops. He stopped at Loleta Union Elementary this morning.

Loleta Union Elementary has been handing out Christmas gifts to its students for the past four years with help from Toys for Tots and community members. It has become a tradition at Loleta Union Elementary. Last year due to covid, they had to drop off gifts at each student’s home.¬†

But this year, Santa, along with his helpers, were able to make an appearance and personally hand out each gift.

“We appreciate the generosity to our school. The students love it. We had one student jumping up and down as soon as he saw the fire truck. The volunteer fire department from Loleta brings them a fire truck every year, and the kids don’t ever stop getting excited. Even the 8th graders this year were looking forward to seeing Santa,” said Autumn Chapman, Superintendent at Loleta Union Elementary.

Toys for Tots gifted all 108 students a gift. The gifts are dropped off earlier in the week, and teachers and staff get together and do all the wrapping.

“We try and do our little part. We chose Loleta a few years ago because it was a single district school. They have some great kids and families, and we just thought we would like to help them out a little bit,” said Rex Bohn with¬† Toys for Tots.

“It was amazing watching them and watching them get excited about something that they know is consistent like she said it’s been four years, but most of these kids are excited because they know its coming and that it’s going to happen next year too,” said Brenda Juarez, School Board President at Loleta Union Elementary.

They know it’s been a challenging school year for many to re-adjust back to in-person learning, and some parents might be struggling financially from the effect of the pandemic, so they are excited to help by providing a Christmas gift this year.

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