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The Boston Globe


Globe Santa

Ailing dad wants Christmas dreams to come true for young daughters

Santa visited with children from Families First Daycare at an event Friday at Copley Place that featured NESN anchor Jamison Coyle and WGBH arts editor Jared Bowen.

Cecille Joan Avila for The Boston Globe

Santa visited with children from Families First Daycare at an event Friday at Copley Place that featured NESN anchor Jamison Coyle and WGBH arts editor Jared Bowen.

Globe Santa staff members have worked tirelessly for the last couple of months processing the thousands of requests from families in need so that no eligible child goes without gifts this Christmas.

Their hands have been full, to say the least, as they have already put more than 25,000 families and 45,000 children on Globe Santa’s list — and they are not through yet.

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One letter to Globe Santa came from a single parent in a community northwest of Boston who is raising two young daughters.

“Early in 2012, I suffered a major back injury that despite surgery has left me with nerve damage in both legs below the knees and minimal movement in my right foot,” the father wrote. “I worked hard to get walking again and my two girls are my biggest inspiration to keep moving and looking forward with a positive and caring attitude.”

His 7- and 5-year old daughters have had to adjust, their father wrote, since dad cannot run around and play with them as he once did.

Of course, his injury has taken a toll on the family’s finances as well.

“Needless to say, money is tight and so is our family budget,” he wrote. “Some of the repercussions of the bills that accrued during my time in the hospital are still being felt today and likely will be for a long time.”

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His girls do not ask for much and he instills in them the value of hard work and responsibility, he wrote, but the prospect of them going without at Christmas was enough to make him swallow his pride and pick up his pen.

“I am a proud man who likes to take the horse by the reins but have been forced because of my circumstance to ask for help,” his letter continued. “It breaks my heart to know that I may not be able to give them much this year.”

For nearly six decades, Globe Santa has delivered toys, books, stocking stuffers, games, and candy to families throughout Eastern Massachusetts that celebrate Christmas in the Santa Claus tradition but cannot afford gifts for their children.

Last year, some $1.3 million was raised and more than 49,000 children in 28,000 families discovered presents from Globe Santa under their tree.

This family will be among the thousands that receive a visit from Globe Santa this year, thanks to the generosity of individuals, groups and local businesses that donate to the fund drive.

Many give to the campaign because they know their donation will help make children like these two sisters happy at Christmas, lifting their spirits after what has been a difficult year.

“I am humbled by this chance to put a smile on their faces,” the girls’ father wrote. “And I thank God each and every day for every second I have with my children.”

The Boston Globe Foundation pays all of the administrative costs associated with the fund drive, so 100 percent of the money donated to Globe Santa is used to buy and deliver presents to families.

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