Union Rescue Mission helps provide gifts for families in need

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- For the last 23 years, the Union Rescue Mission has given parents a chance to make the holidays special for their children.

Each year, parents head over to the rescue mission to pick out gifts for their children. It's a way for moms and dads who are down on their luck and can't afford gifts on their own to be able to provide presents for their kids.

One parent, Esmeralda Dehijar, was at the mission looking for gifts for her 6-year-old son and 4-year-old daughter.

"I got an awesome cart from Hello Kitty," she said. "It's so beautiful. [My daughter] is going to love it."

Another parent found a gift her daughter had been wanting for some time.

"[My daughter] is going to be very excited. She's been looking for a baby stroller, and that's the first thing I saw when I came in here," said Kenyada Bomb.

Andy Bales, CEO of Union Rescue Mission, said the holiday store is a way to help families get gifts for their children, and to be able to say the presents are from Santa Clause.

"We don't want volunteers, although that's wonderful, giving the gifts. We want families to pick out their own gifts and provide Christmas for their own children," he said.

For families in need of a helping hand, this program can make a big difference. Many of those parents insist this Christmas will be a happy one.

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