United Way, American Christmas spread holiday cheer by gifting trees to those in need
United Way of Westchester and Putnam got into the Christmas spirit by teaming up with American Christmas in Mount Vernon to ensure everyone can have a beautiful holiday.
The team sponsored decked out Christmas trees for families that might not be able to have one otherwise.
This is the second year that they teamed up to do this.
There were 14 families that picked up their trees for their households.
The families were nominated by someone in their community to receive the gift.
A total of 40% of the population in Westchester County live paycheck to paycheck, News 12 has learned.
"Westchester gets the rep of being a well-off county where there may not be that many people struggling, but the truth is that there are. You wouldn't expect people in Westchester to have financial difficulties, but that's the hard truth," said Melissa Preudhomme, of United Way.
Christmas trees were not the only thing the families received. Daren Delaney of American Christmas also helped them to decorate.
"My team and I will spend about an hour decorating it with them. Giving them pro tips of what goes where, and the choices we've made,” he said.
Many of the families have dealt with unimaginable hardship.
"This other woman, it's the first Christmas tree she's had in 11 years. The last one she had was with her husband in her house and the house burnt down,” Delaney said.
Seeing the faces of families after their trees are completed makes all the hard work worth it for Delaney.
"This was a beacon of light in an otherwise dark world. To create a moment where someone is afforded happiness in life is a good day,” he said.
Tree recipient Tamicka Hall was grateful for United Way of Westchester and American Christmas.
"We loved it! We had a good time,” she said.