Calif. -- On Friday, December 19, 271
students at the Cabazon Elementary School will receive an exciting
early Yuletide celebration when Santa Claus and helpers from the
Morongo tribe come to call.
Band of Mission Indian volunteers will give each student a Christmas
stockings stuffed with candy and fruit, a backpack brimming with
school supplies and a $50 dollar grocery store gift certificate.
tribal members and volunteers French Miguel, Barbara Calderon,
Virginia Lyons, Mary Lopez, Amber Soza, Anita Soza and Lisa Goad
will also be bringing Christmas cupcakes and refreshments for
Morongo tribe has also committed more than $75,000 in holiday
donations to local charities including San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital
Foundation, Loma Linda University Childrens Hospital Foundation,
Prison to Peace Outreach, Indian Child & Faith Preservation,
Trinity Foster Care, Emmanuel Unique Outreach Partners, Morongo
Faith Chapel Food Ministry, Agua Caliente Elementary School, Veronicas
Home of Mercy, Cherry Valley Brethren School, Ken Hobbs Memorial
Little League, Hoffer Elementary School, All Community Pantry,
Mission Worship Center, Junior League of Riverside, Cystic Fibrosis
Foundation, Debbie Chisholm Memorial Foundation, Sunnymead Middle
School and Shop With A Cop Program.
the economy still sluggish coming into this holiday season the
Morongo Outreach Committee felt it was important to help the children
of our community, said Anne Hutton, tribal council member
and outreach committee chair.
marks the second year in a row that the Morongo tribe will be
donating Christmas gifts to the students at Cabazon Elementary
School. The Morongo volunteers will also be handing out the refreshments
as Santa Claus visits each of the students at the school.
Morongo volunteers were so excited last year to see all the childrens
smiling faces and heartfelt appreciation that we felt it was important
to do it again this year, said Hutton. We know what
its like to have a lean Christmas and now that we have the
means to help others we believe it is important to share with
Elementary School Principal John Curtis said, This is a
new tradition for our students and a welcome one. Morongo tribal
members are making sure these kids all get to experience the real
spirit of Christmas.
Thanksgiving, the Morongo Band of Mission Indians donated $1 million
dollars to the American Red Cross Riverside Chapter and also provided
early hot-turkey meals to more than 5,000 evacuees over seven
days as a result of the Southern California wildfires. Additionally,
the tribe donated 3,000 turkeys to 37 Riverside area charities
to help provide approximately 10,000 meals for local area residents.
Morongo tribe is the largest private sector employer in the Banning-Beaumont
region and a major contributor to the Coachella Valley economy.
The tribe presently employs more than 2,000 people in both gaming
and non-gaming tribal operations.