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Holiday Jam Brightens Season for Local Kids

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Christmas came early for the hundreds of local residents who were invited to Holiday Jam at Antelope Valley Hospital (AVH) on December 17. The community event, coordinated by AVH and Children’s Center of the Antelope Valley, was created to provide some holiday cheer for underprivileged children and their families.

"The holidays can be a difficult time for people with little or no resources, and they can be especially hard on children," said Daren Ayres-Malaj, director of patient access at AVH. "We are always looking for ways to give back to our community throughout the year, but putting together this event was really a labor of love for all who were involved."

Under a festive tent with music playing, Holiday Jam guests were treated to refreshments, including chili dogs, popcorn and cotton candy; fun activities including a photo booth, bounce houses and crafts; and, of course, a visit with Santa Claus. More than 5,000 toys were donated, many by AVH and Children’s Center employees, to ensure that Santa had a gift for every child.

"We are incredibly grateful to the many, many sponsors who helped make this event possible, and helped make the holidays shine a little brighter for so many local families," added Ayres-Malaj.