Wednesday, August 20 2014 5:43 AM EDT2014-08-20 09:43:48 GMT
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KAHALA, OAHU (Hawaii News Now)
"Ho...ho... Ho," Santa exclaimed at Kahala Mall.
"Did you like Thanksgiving?" Santa asked a little girl.
Old Saint Nick is in town.
"What is that a list?" he asked a boy who was sitting on his lap.
And during hard economic times even the big guy can use some help.
"It helps make my job a little easier," Santa said.
One way to do that is by picking an angel tag off of the Salvation Army Angel Tree.
"A greater number have said they are unemployed," said Major Jonnette Mulch of the Salvation Army. "Just on the verge of being evicted from homes, just behind in bills, and just seems to be a tougher year for them this year."
Mulch said there is a dire need this year, in fact at Kahala Mall alone, there are 4000 angel tags hanging on the trees and set on the tables, which already surpassed the angels hanging here last year. She said that may jump up to 6,000 in weeks to come, so they really need your help.
"You can choose any angel that you want, whether it is a girl or a boy or a senior man or woman," said Mulch.
That's exactly what Tenaya Richardson of Kahala is doing as a new holiday and family tradition with her mom Michelle.
"Maybe this one," Tenaya exclaimed while picking a name off of the tree.
She hopes to brighten a little girl's Christmas.
"Here is a nine year old girl who wants nail polish and other girlie things," said Tenaya while reading the little girl's wish list to her mom.
For the past year, the 11-year-old has been saving, so she can help during the season of giving.
"When it comes to Christmas and the Angel Giving Tree, I always put some of my money towards the gifts," said Tenaya.
"Hey mom I decided what I am going to get!" Tenaya excitingly announced to her mom. "Maybe this," (as she pointed to nail polish).
"I hope to let the whole world know that there are kids in need this time of the year," said Tenaya with a smile.
Tenaya has taken care of three angels from the tree, but there are still many more who need gifts.
"We can't do this program without a gracious community," said Mulch.
Mulch said that you have until December 16th to hand pick a present for an angel on the trees at malls statewide, as well as, Central Pacific Bank Branches. She said to remember gifts must be new and unwrapped for seniors, teens, and children. For more information you can check out www.salvationarmyhawaii.org.