Car dealership’s generosity makes the holiday season brighter for young people | Local news

When Susie Krcma went to McFadden’s Friendly Motors a month ago to buy a vehicle, all she had to do was get a metallic blue Chevy Silverado.

“I loved the color,” she said. When Krcma sat down to negotiate the sale, she quickly fell in love with the truck for another reason. The sales associate informed her that McFadden’s plans to donate $ 100 for every vehicle sold in November to Youth Development Company / Police Athletic Activities League for this month’s holiday gift buying program for families.

On Tuesday, Krcma, who works at Meijer in South Haven, saw several of these families using gift cards, courtesy of McFadden’s, to purchase toys and gifts to make their holiday season brighter.

In total, McFadden’s sold 43 vehicles in November, for a total of $ 4,300 which it spent on the YDC Family Christmas Program.

“We just want to give back to our community,” said McFadden Friendly Motors owner Rusty McFadden, who was on site in Meijer on Tuesday with several of his employees to help families choose gifts. “We’ve been in this community for 47 years and wanted to show our appreciation over the holiday season. “

YDC, which offers a variety of programs and services to economically challenged families throughout the South Haven and northern Berrien County area, is using the funds this week to help 7 families, according to Jennifer Green, YDC resource coordinator. .

“That’s a total of 14 kids who will each receive $ 250 each in gift cards,” Green said. “Each family will also receive a $ 50 gift card to use for their holiday meal. “

Ashley Hammons and her three children are among these families helped.

“We lost our house in a fire a month and a half ago,” Hammons said. “We are living with my parents at the moment while we are trying to find accommodation.” To make matters worse, Hammons was also fired from her job at the YDC several weeks ago, due to a shortage of children participating in in-person activities due to lingering concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic.

While Hammons joined several colleagues to shop for holiday gifts for his family on Tuesday, other gift card recipients strolled the aisles of stores browsing the gift possibilities with law enforcement officers from across the country. Van Buren County Sheriff’s Department and South Haven Police Department, who volunteered to help.

Seven-year-old Xavier Celaya was in a partnership with Van Buren’s deputy sheriff, Andrew Laylon. A quick shopper, Xavier chose a metal detector, tablet, and HexBug for some of his freebies.

Meanwhile, her 10-year-old sister Chloe was teaming up with Deputy Felix Torres, who took a lesson on all the latest gift ideas for the little ones, including large colorful mud balls and Pop It toys.

While South Haven MPs and police helped families purchase the YDC gift program, Michigan State Police Soldiers also held their own annual Shop with a Cop vacation program in Meijer on Tuesday.

South Haven Police officers plan to host a similar boutique with a police shopping spree with young people on Thursday at Walmart. The event will also include lunch at the nearby Three Blondes Brewing restaurant. The shopping spree and lunch for 16 students from Van Buren County schools is made possible through funding from Walmart and area businesses.

“” I bought the Silverado on November 1st and was told I was the first to donate “, for each vehicle

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