Christmas Now began in 2013 as the Great Christmas Giveaway. Because our church had a desire to fill the needs of our community, we reached out to Thomas Edison Elementary School to provide gifts and support for children in low-income homes. We included about 50 families in our premier Christmas event, where we had activities provided by Kids Can Cosplay, for the children, refreshments and time with Santa, who delivered a wrapped gift with their name on it to every child up to age 18.
In November 2015, we had a devastating apartment fire in our neighborhood that displaced eight families. We were able to assist with housing and furnishings among meeting other needs, and we were especially grateful that we had the capacity to include them in our third, and growing, Christmas Now.
Since then we have expanded our outreach to Abraham Lincoln Elementary School, Thomas Jefferson Elementary School, Benito Juarez Elementary School and the McKinney Vento Program at the Anaheim Elementary School District.
When we first thought of how to make Christmas miracles happen, Kids Can Cosplay was there and has been for Every Christmas Now event. Local companies and groups like Second Harvest, Blaine Event Services, and Toys-4-Tots have joined the cause to help us give back to the community. Christmas Now 2019 grew to giving holiday presents and food to over 300 children. Here is what it has looked like in years passed: https://www.a1naz.com/christmas-now.
This year’s Christmas Now will be held on Saturday, December 12, 2020 from 9:30 AM to 11:30. Due to Covid-19 it will be different. We will be holding a drive-thru and while our superheroes will be there the activities will be limited. Don’t worry Santa will be there as well.
Covid-19 has not only created social distancing needs it has also seriously impacted the unemployment rate our community; this year the need is even greater than ever.
We want to do more.
Our goal is to double our impact this Christmas. That means 600 children. How are we doing that? Partnering, as always with Kids Can Cosplay, we are holding three different toy drives. We are seeking more community minded business, groups and individuals to help us meet the needs of these families this Christmas. And because we are a not-for-profit organization, we are able to provide donation receipts for your tax returns.
It’s never too early to think about the holidays, and it’s always a gift to be able to help others. Our goal is to share hope and a spirit of support throughout our community. You have a wonderful opportunity to help Christmas Now reach that goal! I’m excited to hear all you have planned for this Christmas Now.
Warmest and sincerest regards,
Pastor Oona Casanova
Anaheim First Church of the Nazarene
1340 N. Candlewood St.
Anaheim, CA 92805