Remember deserving kids with Sun-Times holiday fund this season
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With so much of the news lately focusing on personal selfishness — in the worlds of entertainment, sports and politics — it seems even more important this year to remember the less fortunate, especially as we enter the Christmas holiday season.
One of my favorite things the Sun-Times does is to sponsor the annual “Letters to Santa” program — helping our readers, as well as Sun-Times staff members, to play “messenger” of notes sent by deserving children to that Jolly Old Elf himself up at the North Pole. Last year, “Letters to Santa” served more than 11,000 low-income children in our area with gifts, strongly aided by the contributions to the Empty Stocking Fund.
Among the Chicago Public Schools participating this season is Hanson Park Elementary at 5411 W. Fullerton, where I got a peek at letters from a group of kids in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten classes. At Hanson Park, 94 percent of the children live below the poverty line, and many would not receive presents at the holidays except for the generosity of Sun-Times readers.
In looking over the letters, it’s obvious Santa has to be in touch with popular culture! At least at Hanson Park, Lightning McQueen from the “Cars” animated film franchise is a big hit. That’s why Kaleb and Jaden have asked Santa for a McQueen speedster, just like seen in the movies. Other letters focus on Thomas the Tank Engine, Batman, Spider-Man, Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles and Captain America-themed gifts.
However, it was nice to see this letter from young Adam, who clearly understands the true meaning of the holiday season — asking Santa for “some kitchen toys, so I can play with my sisters.”