ALPHARETTA, Ga. — With about $11,000 and thousands of gifts donated to three local charities, Siemens and its employees will help bring holiday cheer to some 1,000 children and seniors throughout the Forsyth County and Atlanta areas.
Siemens’ Angel Tree campaign started in 2005 with just a few of the company locations participating, but became so popular that by 2009, all locations were participating.
They sponsor three local charities, the Children’s Restoration Network, the Forsyth County Family YMCA and the Forsyth County Senior Center, said Cathe Reams, Siemens communications director.
Reams said this isn’t a company-funded program, but she said it’s incredible to see employees come together to help during these tough economic times.
“Our employees purchase the gifts themselves,” she said. “We receive a list of people in need from each of our charities and our employees pick who to sponsor and purchase gifts based on a list of specific requests or general needs.”
Cliff Kinsey, CEO of the Children’s Restoration Network, said this year’s Angel Tree was the largest toy drive in their 19-year history.
“The toys and gifts they generated filled two large U-Haul trucks,” Kinsey said. “They provided over 500 homeless children with personalized new gifts, new toys and new bikes.”
Kinsey said the employees are unsung heroes for children who feel the world has forgotten them.
“They could not have done more to make the holidays special for them,” he said.
The company also received an $11,000 grant and split it between the charities.
Siemens received the grant after winning the Community Excellence Award in 2011. The donations will help support an additional 60 children associated with CRN, 76 additional seniors and 180-250 individuals for the YMCA.
“We won the company Community Excellence Award and decided the best way to use the money was to give it to the charities to purchase even more gifts,” Reams said.