TEMECULA – What makes a great weekend? If any of the seven Assistance League of Temecula Valley chapters for children’s philanthropic program volunteers were asked, they would say smiling children, happy families and enthusiastic volunteers, which is exactly what they experienced Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 10-11, at the 13th annual U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton Back to School Dressing. The event was hosted by Assistance League Temecula Valley and members of Capistrano Valley, Laguna Beach, Saddleback Valley, North Coast, Inland North County and Rancho San Dieguito Assistance League chapters.
During the two-day event, 627 students were given new clothes, shoes and hygiene kits.
As volunteers heard multiple times from the families’ served, “It’s one less thing we have to think about.”
Once these families leave the Assistance League volunteers usually don’t see them again until the following year; however, this year, one family returned early Sunday morning to bring a hand-written note by two young boys, thanking the nonprofit for what they were given. Their mom said they seldom buy new clothes and the children wanted to thank them again.
The Temecula chapter provided two pairs of boy’s jeans to each of the 332 boys attending the event. One boy’s mother, whose son was 4 or 5 years old, was looking through all the stacks of jeans determined to find just the right jeans. When asked what style of jeans she was searching for: husky, skinny, etc., she said she’d know when she found it. Finally, at the bottom of a stack she found the perfect pair, boot cut. She explained that her son only wears cowboy boots, stressing the word “only.” Sure enough, while the other boys were in tennis shoes and flip flops, her child was wearing cowboy boots.
At the end of Sunday’s dressing if those same seven volunteers were asked why they continue to come back to help year after year, they would have said that something truly special happens over that one great weekend and sent their sincere thanks to all the service members and their families.
Assistance League Thrift Shop, 28720 Via Montezuma, in Temecula is the main source of revenue for all chapter programs. Assistance League of Temecula Valley is a nonprofit, all volunteer philanthropic corporation dedicated to serving the needs of families in southwest Riverside County for the last 30 years. For more information about philanthropic programs or membership information, call (951) 694-8018 or visit the chapter website at www.assistanceleague.org/temecula-valley.
Submitted by Assistance League of Temecula Valley.