GIA staff collects holiday toys, cash, food for local community

The Gemological Institute of America’s Carlsbad staff collected more than $6,600 in cash, toys, and food items to help local families during the holidays. As a result of the drive, about 400 toys and gifts were distributed, and more than 200 families enjoyed a holiday dinner. GIA partnered with North County Lifeline Inc., a non-profit agency that distributed the gifts and food to area families in need.

The Institute’s fund-raising efforts consisted of a combined gift, food, and cash drive held at GIA’s world headquarters and Robert Mouawad Campus in Carlsbad, Dec. 1–15. Since 1996, the Institute has annually organized a drive to aid families in need over the holidays, and 2004 marks the eighth year in Carlsbad. To date, GIA has donated more than $40,000 in gifts, food, and cash to a variety of community recipients and organizations.

Representatives from North County Lifeline delivered the gifts to a shelter in the city Vista operated by Operation Hope, as well as to local families and children, including children of low-income families in the Mesa Margarita and in the Julian areas.

Formed in 1969, North County Lifeline, Inc. is dedicated to serving North San Diego County families in need. The agency provides a wide range of community services that include family development, youth services, youth delinquency prevention, counseling, mediation and legal services, transportation and travel training, fair housing, and a volunteer program. The organization’s motto is, “Enhancing the positive quality of individual, family, and community life.”