On December 16th, the spirit of giving and community enhancement will come alive at San Bernardino Valley College (SBVC) during the “Christmas Around the World” event organized by Sista’s Making a Difference. The event, lauded for its blend of holiday cheer and community upliftment, aims to distribute over 10,000 toys and provide crucial job opportunities.
In collaboration with San Bernardino County Workforce Development, Ronnie Miller, a pivotal organizer and workforce development manager for the Black Chamber of Commerce Inland Empire, emphasizes the event’s unique blend of celebration and empowerment. “We are not just offering a handout, but a big hand up,” said Miller. “With live entertainment, including Tommy the Clown and various vendors, our goal is to grow and sustain our community economically.”
Tommy the Clown, known for creating a dance group by engaging street-involved youth, will grace the stage for the second consecutive year, showcasing the transformative power of art and community.
In addition to the festive activities, the event will feature a job hiring event with various companies participating, reflecting Miller’s vision of taking people “out of survival mode and into thriving.” This initiative aligns with her observations as a community organizer, where she noticed the need for year-long support for regular attendees.
Omar Perkins, CEO of Ramo Youth Restoration, a partner in the event, adds a layer of mentorship and education to the festivities. “We’re bringing over 1500 toys and our mentor program, which includes anti-bullying efforts, a big brother program, and after-school support,” Perkins stated. He stressed the importance of having role models, especially in his capacity as a football coach, ensuring children feel supported.
Perkins also highlighted the importance of organizations like Sista’s Making a Difference and Ramo in bringing authentic inner-city experiences to the forefront. “San Bernardino talks the talk, but many don’t walk the walk. We’re here to make a tangible difference,” he added.
The event will also feature a free vaccination clinic by SB County, a 37-foot bus offering free medical care, including flu shots and prostate screenings by Tri-state Mobile Clinic, and a blood donation drive by LifeStream.
Adding to the excitement, former Utah Jazz star Bryon Russel will host a basketball camp at SBVC after the event, contributing to the day’s theme of sports and mentorship.
“Christmas Around the World” promises to be a day of joy, support, and opportunity, embodying the spirit of the holiday season in a way that uplifts and empowers the San Bernardino community.
- Date: December 16th
- Time: 11 AM – 4 PM
- Location: San Bernardino Valley College
- Register here
- Contact: 623-418-6063
Partners: SBVC, Survive Inc., IEHP, Supervisor Joe Baca Jr., Do Farms LLC, and others.
The event is open to all, with no documentation required for participation. Children aged 0-17 are eligible for toy distributions, operating on a first-come, first-served basis. Children MUST be present.