In the spirit of the holidays, Alhambra-based Southern California Ambulance donated $1,000 worth of toys on Dec. 11 to the Alfonso Perez Special Education Center. The 35-member team brought dozens of Buzz Lightyear action figures, Hello Kitty tambourines, building blocks, and other toys to the public school, which specializes in special education for students ages 3 to 22.
Southern California Ambulance Public Relations Director Oliver Arellano is familiar with the school — his daughter is a student. During a June visit, Arellano noticed that many of the school's toys were outdated and worn. He consulted Principal Michael J. Terry and teacher Laurie Heeger-Averitt for suggestions on what would best suit students' needs, then approached staff at Southern California Ambulance.
Employees began putting three dollars per paycheck into an envelope, raising $1,000. They headed to Toys R Us and filled shopping carts, mostly with loud electronic toys and instruments for the large number of deaf students enrolled at the school.
Southern California Ambulance, which was founded in 2008 and contracts with Beverly Hospital in Montebello, surprised most of the staff at the Alfonso Perez Special Education Center with their donation, and the company shared in their joy. “We are fortunate to have a little bit extra to give back to the community,” Arellano said.
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