The holiday spirit was felt all over the Valley thanks to our generous ABC15 viewers and their participation in our Operation Santa Claus-a-Thon.
It was a busy day! We had children's choirs, grocery carts filled with more than $200 worth of canned goods, the South Mountain High School step group, even Takota the dog showed up pulling a wagon full of toys!
There were big check donations from Wells Fargo for $5,000 and $10,000 from the UPS store. We also saw incredible generosity from viewers like the Peabody family, who donated a wheelchair-accessible van to Phoenix Children's Hospital.
"It's a wheelchair conversion, full of toys for the kids and it's all about the kids this season," said Jeff Peabody.
The $25,000 donation was filled with $3,500 worth of toys! Those toys will benefit families like the Ruizs.
"Avery, our youngest, he's 8 years old, has been going to Phoenix Children's Hospital since he was one month old," Avery's mom Adrian said.
But, even a bout of rejection from a kidney transplant wouldn't keep Avery away on Wednesday. He may be little, but he has a big heart.
"I've been to Phoenix Children's a lot of times. There are other kids stuck there so I brought them these toys to play with," Avery said.
This inspiration from an 8-year-old serves as a reminder to all of us that we should be thankful for what we have and give to those in need this holiday season.
Thank you Arizona. You helped us raise $126,135 to help families in need this holiday season.