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Source: San Diego County Sheriff's Department

December 17, 2016 (San Diego) - Three generous community members (Secret Santas) enlisted the help of Sheriff's Deputies today to surprise dozens of families with cash and gift cards.  People's reactions were one of pure joy.   

The Secret Santas donated $15,000 in cash and wish to remain anonymous.  Their generous gift was handed out across the county today from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.   Families received between $200 to $500 in cash. Santa's helpers visited the North County (Encinitas, Solana Beach, San Marcos and Vista) and East County (Lemon Grove, Spring Valley, Rancho San Diego, Santee, Lakeside, Alpine, Ramona and unincorporated El Cajon).  

Sheriff's Deputies identified families in need while working as School Resource Deputies or while on patrol in speaking to community members.   There are families struggling to pay rent or currently homeless.  Others are coping with the loss of a job or single mothers not making enough money to support the family's needs. There are also stories of a family loss, with several loved ones passing away or family members with medical issues, as well as parents taking care of children diagnosed with autism, cancer and other health issues.  

The Sheriff's Department would like to thank the Secret Santas for their donation. We also want to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season.

To download B-Roll and soundbites of the heartwarming encounters, visit