More than 50 single mothers and single fathers from low-income families received gifts for their children during a holiday celebration on Dec. 8 hosted by the Mt. San Jacinto College Cooperative Agencies Resources for Education (CARE) Program.
The Soboba Band of Luiseno Indians, Soboba Casino and the Soboba Foundation generously donated 100 toys for the children of CARE program parents. The San Jacinto Fire Department escorted Santa, aka Bruce Brady of Mt. San Jacinto College, to the event held in the San Jacinto Campus cafeteria, said Ketmani Kouanchao, director of the CARE program. MSJC students who are members of MSJC’s chapter of the international honor society Phi Theta Kappa provided face painting for the youngsters and students from the college’s “a 2nd Chance” club and the MSJC Black Student Union assisted in the event, she said.
“It was heartwarming to see Soboba, the city firefighters and our staff and students come together to help make the holidays happier for our families,” Kouanchao said. “They really made a difference in the lives of others.”
San Jacinto Valley resident Norma Fuentes and her children were among the CARE program families who participated in this year’s celebration. Other families who participated are from Banning, Beaumont, Cabazon, Lake Elsinore, Murrieta, Perris, Sun City, Winchester and Wildomar.
CARE is a state-funded program designed to provide assistance and support for single parent, head-of-household who are participants of the CalWorks/TANF, EOPS students. The main goal is to help obtain a degree, certification, transfer and/or marketable job skills.
CARE is a supplemental support program of the EOPS (Extended Opportunity Program and Services) at Mt. San Jacinto College.
San Jacinto Valley resident Norma Fuentes and her children enjoy the festivities during
Mt. San Jacinto College’s CARE Holiday Celebration.
Santa arrives at Mt. San Jacinto College’s CARE Holiday Celebration,
escorted by the San Jacinto Fire Department
Banning resident Timothy Diaz and her son Silas enjoy the festivities
during Mt. San Jacinto College’s CARE Holiday Celebration.