SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The Armed Services YMCA has opened its annual SuperParent holiday gift shop, where military parents can pick out donated gifts for their children.
The agency plans to distribute 5,000 toys to some 600 military families. About 400 families on a waiting list will get a chance to look over the goods on Thursday, according to the YMCA.
Many military families live at or near the federal poverty level and struggle to make ends meet at this time of year, according to the Armed Services YMCA.
"We have provided the SuperParent program for 26 years and we know firsthand how much these families struggle to make ends meet,'' said Amy de Mueles, the agency's social work program director. "For military parents, being able to provide a holiday gift for a child means so much more than the gift itself. It's about showing them how appreciated they are and helping to eliminate some of the holiday stress.''
Parents helped by a shopping assistant can pick out two new toys for each child in their household. Members of the San Diego Padres plan to be on hand Thursday, according to the Y.
The program operates with backing from the Spiva Family Foundation, Downtown San Diego Lions Club, Kiwanis Club of San Diego, and the Armed Services Family Support Fund San Diego at the Rancho Santa Fe Foundation.