MORE than 800 smiles beamed through the usually gloomy atmosphere of Helenvale yesterday when a Kabega Park couple hosted their annual Christmas party.
Randy and Kim Hendricks have returned annually since 2012 to hand out hundreds of goodie bags in front of the Gelvandale Magistrate’s Court.
The kindhearted couple previously used their own money and groceries to provide about 200 goodie bags for the children.
They quadrupled that this year to about 800 bags after partnering with the National Prosecuting Authority, Gelvandale SuperSpar, SAPS, Alexander Forbes and John B. Scott Attorneys.
“Christmas is about giving, not receiving,” Randy said.
“And as these children have to go through so much with the ever-escalating gang violence in the area, we want these kids to know there are people out there looking out for them and they don’t need to go the gang route.”
Elvario Bruintjies, 12, said: “I came all the way from Malabar extension to get my pakkie. My friend ran from Helenvale to tell us about the free sweets. We even got cake.”
Helenvale resident and mother of four Veronique Cassels, 34, said: “I’m so happy they came. We feel very bad that we can’t give our children all the little things during the year. And it gets even worse at Christmas because we can’t buy them gifts.”