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Families surprised with more than $25,000 in Christmas gifts

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Several local families received more than $25,000 in Christmas gifts on Thursday night. More than 25 hardworking families were surprised at the annual Holiday Helping Hands event.

“Us being able to participate in this was just really wonderful. We’re a family of five so it’s definitely going to help out a lot,” Ajani Haynes said. “We’re just definitely very appreciative.”

The families were nominated by several local organizations. Each family received Publix and Target gift cards to help with their holiday shopping.

“Christmas can be very tough for a lot of people. There’s desperate need in our community and we need people to reach out and help. We’re just trying to do our part and help in every way that we can,” Westley Bernhardt, chairman of The Harvey Bernhardt Foundation said.

The Harvey Bernhardt Foundation was started in 2007 after Dr. Harvey Bernhardt passed away. The foundation’s mission is to provide one-time financial assistance for hardship cases.


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