by Joe Wilhelm Jr.
Santa made a special stop at Family Support Services of North Florida to meet with Foster Kids he may have had a hard time finding.
Santa’s visit on Jan. 24 was made possible by the Jacksonville Bar Association’s Young Lawyer Section (YLS) “Holiday in January” annual project.
“It is geared toward children who were relocated during the holiday season due to an unsafe, neglectful or even abusive home,” said Fraz Ahmed, chair of the project. “The purpose is to give these children a holiday they did not otherwise get to enjoy.”
Family Support Services, coordinator of the local Foster Care program, hosted the YLS party, which included food, drinks, a clown, presents and pictures with Santa.
“The joy in the eyes of the children attending the Young Lawyers party was overwhelming,” said Chuck Young of Family Support Services of North Florida. “As victims of neglect, this was the first time many of them attended a Christmas party, visited with Santa, or received a gift. One child didn’t want to eat when the pizza arrived as he wanted to keep an eye on his new bicycle.”
The volunteers who helped make the event happen included YLS board members Christian George, Chris Hand, and Mike Regan, as well as the efforts of fellow YLS members Brad Blair, Rice Ferrelle, Amanda Ferrelle, Jerry Hanberry, Megan Harper, Jessica Lanifero, Lindsay Tygart and Nick Martino.
The law firms of Terrell Hogan and Pajcic & Pajcic sponsored the event.