LA HABRA : Housing Service Throws a Party


Christmas is about love and giving thanks for being alive.

That was the message at the Neighborhood Housing Service’s third annual Christmas party Tuesday at the La Habra Boxing Club gym, where about 150 needy children and their families gathered to celebrate.

For two hours, the families forgot about their financial woes and enjoyed the party, which came complete with poetry readings, Christmas carols, a pinata and Santa Claus.

“Christmas is about being together, helping each other and caring,” said Mary Lou Gomez, an NHS volunteer who helped organize the event.


NHS is a nonprofit organization that makes low-interest loans to people with low incomes so they can buy homes. It also offers residents community leadership skills.

Gomez said the purpose of the annual party is to spread Christmas cheer among the families of the predominantly Latino neighborhoods of Grace/Pacific and Corona. Most of the families cannot afford to buy Christmas gifts for their children and said they were grateful for the party.

They applauded, sang in Spanish and English, and in some cases wept while watching a playlet by the Chicano Poets Society.

The drama focused on a boy who thought Christmas was about gifts. When his parents could not afford to buy him anything, he cried until the hero, Super Chicano, came to comfort him.

“Don’t you know what you have is more than many people have?” asked Super Chicano, played by Carlos De Rosas. “You have a roof over your head, you have good health, you have food to eat and you have a family that loves you.”

De Rosas added that Christmas was a time to remember the birth of Jesus, who was born in a stable to bring hope to humankind.


Javier A. Cortez, 27, co-founder of the Poets Society, said he wrote the playlet “to let people know that the real meaning of Christmas is to feel fortunate for what you have and that the gifts from the heart are the gifts that count the most.”