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Fort Worth Man Plays Santa, Raises Money For Toys After Abused Children's Shelter Loses Sponsor

FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) - When COVID-19 prevented a North Texas nonprofit for abused children, Jonathan's Place, from receiving their normal Christmas celebrations, a Fort Worth man stepped in.

His name is Chris Bailey, and so far, he's raised more than $10,000 to give kids the Christmas of their dreams.

"Seeing a kid get a brand new bicycle. Man there's nothing like it," Bailey said.

Chris Bailey as Santa
Chris Bailey as Santa (credit Chris Bailey)

His love for helping others started 18 years ago, when he donated his son's old toys to kids in need.

Seeing their joy, sparked 18 years worth of hosting his own personal toy drives in Fort Worth.

"Unfortunately this year due to COVID-19, we had to kind of call things off this year," Bailey said.

Because of the pandemic, he shaved off his beard and cancelled his own drive, not knowing another opportunity to step in and fill Santa's shoes would present itself.

"We have a we have a warehouse on site where we put all of our donations and everything for the children, and it's really bare this year because of COVID," said Allicia Frye, the CEO of Jonathan's Place.

They typically have a company who sponsors their Christmas toys.

But when COVID-19 prevented them, Bailey took their place.

"This is huge for them," Frye said. "We could still count on Chris to be there for our children and to bring them toys because to be honest with you I can't think of anyone else who's more deserving of an amazing Christmas than children who have suffered from abuse."

Chris Bailey as Santa
Chris Bailey as Santa (credit Chris Bailey)

The toys will be delivered, wrapped and placed underneath the tree for kids in their care to open on Christmas morning.

Bailey won't be in attendance to watch them open their gifts due to COVID-19, but says knowing they'll have a Christmas at all, is enough for him.

"It's not about us, it's about these kids and these kids. And they are going to get to have an almost normal Christmas," Bailey said.

For more information or to donate, click here.


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