For over 25 years the Wilson Automotive dealerships have been an integral part of their communities – volunteering and donating to local schools, organizations and causes. During the holiday season these efforts seem to intensify tenfold as our associates find new ways to share the holiday spirit with those in need. Including write-ups on every dealership’s projects and contributions would take more space than we have in this newsletter. But here are a few of the highlights.
In December 2011, Holly Wilson (wife of owner David Wilson, and aptly named for her December birthday) received what she termed “the best birthday present ever:” a Kmart receipt. This was a very special receipt, however, for it listed hundreds of transactions – all the Christmas layaway accounts David paid off at his local store. In 2011 it was 260 accounts to the tune of nearly $16,000. In 2012, it was 320 accounts and $18,000. This year it was 213 accounts and $19,000. Over the past 3 years nearly 800 people have received a Christmas miracle – courtesy of a very generous Secret Santa.
“Shop With A Cop” has become a highlight of the holiday season for Jane Tenaglia and her team at Right Toyota. This year she was joined by Jennifer Marthaler and Ed Hines and their families for this magical day. The children are taken to the local police department where they are met by officers who volunteer their time to serve as personal shoppers. Each youngster then rides in a squad car – lights flashing and sirens blaring – to Wal-Mart where they are given a $150 gift card to spend on whatever they want. The amazing thing is that most of the children don’t shop for themselves. Moms, dads, sisters and brothers are first on the list – and if anything is left, they will buy themselves something. Our associates who participate attest that they learn a great deal about the true Christmas Spirit from these underprivileged children every year.
Lisa Scadron of South Coast Toyota was listening to KROQ on her way to work one morning when the DJ began talking about The Friends & Helpers Foundation, an organization that supports victims of domestic abuse and violence. As a result, the ladies in the business office opted not to exchange gifts this year and instead “adopt” a family of 5. They shopped, wrapped and provided the family with items from their Christmas list. Pictured here with some of the gifts ready for delivery are Maria Lopez, Sarah Lemos, Karino Reynoso, Michelle Garcia, Lisa Scadron, and Lynne Todd.
“Be the Miracle” is the goal of the Toyota of Huntington Beach employees who support OliveCrest during the holiday. In January these associates sign up for voluntary payroll deductions in order to fill the wish lists of abused and abandoned children. This year those personal donations amounted to over $13,000. It took five pickups and a couple of vans to carry this bounty of presents, bikes and gift cards to the 500 boys and girls sheltered at Olivecrest. And as this newsletter goes to print, Huntington Beach employees are already signing up for next year’s opportunity to “Be the Miracle” in a child’s life.
“I cannot believe that the purpose of life is to be happy. I think the purpose of life is to be useful, to be responsible, to be compassionate. It is, above all to matter, to count, to stand for something, to have made some difference that you lived at all.”