Sunday, March 3

Toy drive helping families in need in Palm Beach County

No child forgotten is something of a mantra now for a Wellington mom who stared down a reality years ago and turned her life around to meet a need.

For a few months every year, the magic of the North Pole settles into Aimee Stern’s home in Wellington.

She started making a list six years ago when she founded the Mom’s Club of Wellington Facebook page.

“Six years ago, I decided there were a lot of people in need,” she said.

Stern said around the holidays, people started posting, asking for help with food and toys for their kids.

“A lot of people started bringing presents over, wanted to adopt families,” she said.

Now, there are 1,000 kids on Stern’s list and she has other elves helping check those wishlists twice.

“A lot of the time we’ll say the gifts for Christmas are from Santa and they kind of are, because the parents don’t know what the kids are getting,” she said. “There’s a wish list but they don’t always know what the children are getting.”

For Stern and her team of holiday helpers, the wrapping, the sifting and the packing isn’t just busy work. It’s a feeling that comes when propping up others truly is the greatest gift one can get.

“It was just amazing,” she said. “People hug you and it makes you feel like you’re making such a huge difference.”

Stern is accepting donations through the end of this week. Right now, she has 29 families that have not been adopted this holiday season.

Stern will host a wrapping party on Dec. 16 at her home and all of the gifts will be handed out just in time for Christmas.

If you would like to adopt a family or make a donation, call Aimee Stern at 561-504-1814.

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