Jessica Munguia and LaKenya Jackson each faced hardship over the years and unreliable transportation increased their challenges, and on Saturday, Dec. 10, local business owners stepped up to help.
At the ninth Colonies Holiday Miracles event held at Colonies Crossroads shopping center in Upland, donors joined to give these two special women 2017 Chevrolet Sparks.
“This began because local business owners wanted to help financially struggling families. Every year, it garners even more support, allowing us to help even more underprivileged children, and now, families like the Munguias and Jacksons,” said Jeff Burum, co-managing partner of Colonies Partners, which co-sponsored the event, and along with Mark Christopher Auto Center and the Larson O’Brien law firm, donated the cars.
Sponsors include Colonies Partners, Pacific Development Group, Mountain View Chevrolet in Upland, Larson O’Brien, Crebs Family Foundation, Frontier Communities, Kohl’s, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Target, Albertsons and Home Depot. Hall of famers James Worthy and Eric Dickerson attended, giving inspirational speeches, spending time with families and taking photos with the kids.
The Munguias lost their parents when they were young, and Jessica, at 18, became guardians of her three brothers. Her car was twenty years old and needed constant repair.
For Jackson, the days started at 4:30 a.m. so that she could get her children to school. Buses were their only transportation. She had been laid off and unable to find steady employment. With a car, she can take her younger children to school and search for a permanent job.
“We believe in giving back to the community, and these donations are an example of that,” said Chris Leggio, President of Mark Christopher Chevrolet Cadillac Buick GMC and Mountain View Chevrolet.
At the event, hundreds of children selected based on need, were given free shopping sprees. The kids were referred by Hope Through Housing, House of Ruth, OPARC, Children’s Fund, Children’s Hope, House of Ruth, Upland Housing Authority, Pacific Lifeline, and Foothill Family Shelter. Since 2007, nearly 2,000 underprivileged children have been invited.
Local service organizations, High School Key Clubs and members of the Upland police and fire departments as well as other safety personnel from the region volunteered at the event.
For more information and photos, go to www.coloniesholidaysmiracles.org