SHS and Baba’s Magical Christmas

Scarlett Campbell, Co-Editor

Shannon Nelson holds a stocking filled with gifts to be given through the Baba’s Magical Christmas program. Nelson started the program in 2008, and it’s named after her mother.

The holiday season is upon us, here at Salida High School, we love to give. The SHS Student Council has partnered with Baba’s Magical Christmas to give members of our community a truly unforgettable Christmas. 

The program was founded in 2008 by Shannon Nelson. Starting off small with only five to six families, the program has grown to serve over 90 kids. Children and families are recommended by Longfellow Elementary, Salida Middle School, Salida High School, Horizons Exploratory Academy, Family Youth Initiatives and Boys and Girls Club. 

“The most rewarding part of the program is that the school and agency staff tell us that it matters to the kids and families. Along with gifts we also provide clothing, shoes, grocery store gift cards and household items. We want the kids and families to have quality items that they want and need,” Nelson explained. 

The Student Council decided to partner with Baba’s Magical Christmas after hearing about it through Principal Trujillo. Student Council Advisor, Catelin Miles added, “I feel that it’s very important to give back and be philanthropic during the holiday season.” 

Senior Kaiden Veatch presents a giant shark he wrapped and will be giving away as part of SHS Student Council’s partnership with Baba’s Magical Christmas.

This semester, students fundraised over six thousand dollars to put towards this program. With Nelson’s list in their hands, students shopped extensively for these children gathering what they both needed and wanted. From clothes, to shoes, to toys, and even other items such as blankets and hygiene products; students worked to make sure that kids within our community can have a memorable Christmas. Nelson added, “Our goal is to help families and kids who are in difficult situations have a very special Christmas. We all have challenging times at different points in our lives and I see this as a ‘pay it forward’ kind of program.” The program was named after Nelson’s mom who was named “Baba” by her daughter. “When I was a kid, my mom would have us [her family] adopt a family every year at Christmas. So when she died I wanted to honor her legacy.” 

When reflecting on the experience, Student Council member Amy Adams said, “Doing all of the shopping for these kids was so gratifying and it was so fun to be creative and channel our [inner] kid and figure out what to get everybody.” 

Student Council spent this past week wrapping and is in the process of delivering them. “It feels good to give,” Adams said.