There’s been a lot of giving across the Eastern District, with Police staff giving out more than 200 food hampers and 400 Santa sacks of toys to families in need of a little Christmas cheer.
It’s all part of Operation Blue Santa, which sees local Police working with local churches, organisations and businesses to pull together food, toys and even Christmas trees for the more vulnerable families in local communities.
In Hawke’s Bay, PST Sergeant Libby Bradford has been leading the operation, with incredible support from Whāngaia Administrator Jo Tuhega, who Libby says has gone above and beyond to ensure the operation runs smoothly.
More than 80 food hampers and 400 Santa sacks have been distributed to families, nominated by staff as needing a little pick me up at Christmas.
The team has worked alongside faith-based support organisation, Te Hahi to make it all happen.
Meanwhile in Tairāwhiti, Whangaia Constable Tracey Mann has been coordinating everything, alongside Te Aka Ora Charitable Trust and Countdown Gisborne.
They’ve delivered close to 150 food hampers across the East Coast, once again to families staff have nominated as deserving of a basket.
Both Libby and Tracey say it’s fantastic to be able to send a little Christmas cheer to families who may have had a rough year or risen above adversity and made positive steps in their lives during the year.
They say the generosity of the public in donating to Blue Santa is awesome.
“This is what Christmas is all about,” says Libby.