At Olympic High School a very special teacher, Mrs.Ashley Alston, started the Operation Santa Claus program 13 years ago. Operation Santa Claus provides gifts to Hidden Valley Elementary School – one of Charlotte Mecklenburg’s most impoverished schools. Due to COVID-19 students have been unable to wrap the gifts or bring in toys, but that did not stop them. Here is what Mrs.Alston had to say about Operation Santa Claus 2020: “Operation Santa Claus was not approved to be done with students this year due to Covid. However, I didn’t want to let down the students at Hidden Valley since I knew, especially during this pandemic, that they would probably have been some of the communities hit hardest.
“They reached out to me often about the event so I decided to reach out to Mr. Realon to see if he knew anyone who wanted to donate to try and help. He was able to secure one large donation, but only enough to get each kid one toys and the supplies to wrap and prepare everything.”
So I went and bought all the toys for about 950 kids. I had been collecting stuffed animals since October just in case. And I packaged them all up in my house with my sister, son, and husband’s help. We wanted a U-Haul to transport them to the school and passed them out in a drive-through event. It was so much work but definitely worth it.” Even with these tough circumstances, our schools are doing the best they can to make sure everyone is happy.