11/23/05 — Operation Santa Claus under way

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Operation Santa Claus under way

By News-Argus Staff
Published in News on November 23, 2005 1:45 PM

Operation Santa Claus is the annual Christmas drive in which the Mental Health Association in Wayne County provides Christmas gifts to citizens in Wayne County with mental illness and or disabilities in our local nursing homes and care facilities.

Operation Santa Claus is a project sponsored by the Mental Health Association Chapters throughout North Carolina. The Mental Health Association in Wayne County has been sponsoring this project since 1960. Local support through the years has allowed the program and its volunteers to serve others in Wayne County for the last forty-five years.

Each year, the campaign receivse wish lists from local facilities to find out what our they need. Volunteers take the lists and go shopping for the gifts. They also wrap and deliver the gifts to the designated facility.

There are several ways people can help. The operation needs monetary donations and volunteers for shopping and wrapping the gifts. Last year, about 400 Wayne County residents received a Christmas gift through the program. Donations of Wayne County residents and businesses provided gifts for residents of Britthaven, Cherry Hospital, Claiborne Place, Eastpointe, Fremont Rest Center, Glencare of Mt. Olive, H.O.P.E., John Oliver Center, Life, Inc., O'Berry Center, Skill Creations, Inc., Sunbridge Care & Rehab., Wayne Opportunity, Woodard Care, Woodard Retirement Village, and Wayne County Group Home.

Operation Santa Claus also provided sleeping bags to the Goldsboro Police Department for the homeless in Wayne County.

It is only through the support of Wayne County individuals, churches, businesses and civic clubs that the program is able to assist to the less fortunate.

To make a donation, send it to Operation Santa Claus, c/o Mental Health Association in Wayne County, PO Box 1476, Goldsboro, N.C. 27533. If you would like to volunteer to shop and/or wrap gifts, please call the organization's office at 734-3530.