SAN ARDO — Santa’s helpers from Aera Energy in San Ardo brightened the holidays for students from San Ardo School, San Ardo Head Start Preschool and their families.
Each student received gifts and their families given the makings for a special holiday meal from Aera Energy and the office of Monterey County Supervisor Chris Lopez.
“The cost of just about everything has gone up this year, adding even more stress to many of our families who are already on very tight budgets,” said Catherine Reimer, principal of San Ardo School and superintendent of the San Ardo Union Elementary School District. “Our families already struggle to buy or pay for basic necessities like food and shelter — so they don’t have extra funds to spend on special holiday meals or gifts.”
Employees from Aera-San Ardo and Lopez handed out 96 gifts to students, and 56 complete pozole-meal kits to families at the distribution event. The pozole kits included all the makings to cook a meal that is traditionally enjoyed by Hispanic families during the holidays and were assembled by the Food Bank for Monterey County.
“While turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce are typically distributed during holiday meal drives, I’ve heard from many of our local families that turkey isn’t what they would traditionally serve during the holidays,” Lopez said. “We’re grateful for Aera’s partnership to make pozole-meal kits possible in San Ardo, creating traditional meals for families to enjoy together during the holidays.”
Aera-San Ardo employees purchased and wrapped gifts for every student enrolled at San Ardo School and the San Ardo Head Start Preschool.
“We’re so incredibly appreciative for Aera Energy and Monterey County Supervisor Chris Lopez’s office for putting families in San Ardo first and doing something special for them here. For many of our kids, it may be the only present they get this year, and we’re so glad they will have a hearty holiday meal to enjoy with their loved ones,” Reimer said.