By ZEINAB NAJM
DEARBORN — Dearborn firefighters were joined by Santa Claus and Sparky the Fire Dog to spread Christmas cheer and presents to families at the Beaumont Center for Exceptional Families.
About 40 firefighters and donors toured the facility and distributed gifts to children Dec. 11.
Firefighters have been participating in their annual holiday giving campaign for 30 years and have partnered with the center for 10 years.
“We raised $100,000 through our burn drive this year,” Fire Capt. Steven Worden said. “It’s great to see the reaction of the children and families when we hand out the gifts.”
Beaumont Center for Exceptional Families Medical Director Dr. Susan Youngs praised the work and dedication of the firefighters to children in the community.
“The Dearborn firefighters have been longtime supports of the center,” she said. “Every year they work hard to give children without a Christmas, the chance to have gifts and great holiday.”
Mason Maier, 4, of Gibraltar, who attends the center for therapy treatments, was excited to receive his present from Santa.
“I can’t wait to go home and play with my toy,” he said.
The Center for Exceptional Families, 18501 Rotunda Drive, is a partnership between Beaumont Health System and the University of Michigan-Dearborn Early Childhood Education Center.
In addition to traditional child care and education, the center also serves children with multiple special needs and their families throughout metropolitan Detroit, Oakland County and Ohio.
For more information on the center go to oakwood.org/cef.
(Zeinab Najm can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)