On Friday, Dec. 21, several of Santa’s helpers, his elves, one of his reindeer and even a toy soldier visited pediatric patients at LAC+USC Hospital in downtown Los Angeles in an effort to spread a little joy. PUSD Marshall Fundamental student community service club, The A.C.T. Club (which stands for Action Changes Things and is comprised mostly of 8th grade students), delivered toys and spent several hours playing with the pediatric patients and their siblings.
Every child on the floor and their siblings had a chance to select a toy and decorate sugar cookies and afterwards, Santa’s helpers played games with the children. Those patients who were unable to leave their room got a visit from several of Santa’s helpers bearing gifts in a big red wagon.
Children in PICU (pediatric intensive care unit) and isolation weren’t forgotten either. And, the parents of infants in NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) were given a small gift as well. The hospital’s Department of Children and Family Services unit were also gifted a box of toys.
The A.C.T. Club did several toy drives at Webster’s Community Pharmacy in Altadena and The Dinosaur Farm in South Pasadena and raised over 150 toys. They were also gifted toys from the Altadena Fire Station, #11. In addition to the toys, the club also donated books for the unit’s mobile library, board games, and three portable DVDs and movies. It was a fun day had by all, but according to Amina Malone, the A.C.T. Club president, “I think we received the greatest gift of all, it’s an amazing feeling to make a kid’s day when they needed it most.”