The Salt Lake Board of Realtors will hold its annual Christmas in July event at The Road Home homeless shelter on Friday.
This year 75 families about 300 people, including 24 infants will be given basic daily living necessities. Each individual will receive a backpack filled with games, toys, books, back-to-school supplies, blankets, clothing and personal hygiene items.
The celebration will take place from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at The Road Home, 210 S. Rio Grande St. in downtown Salt Lake City.
At 9 a.m., Santa and Mrs. Clause will present horse-drawn carriage rides to children. The Jazz Bear will make an appearance at 10:30 a.m. In addition, games, crafts, and lunch will be provided.
"This is one moment where children can take their minds off the daily challenges of homelessness," said Stacey Staley, branch broker at Coldwell Banker Residential. "It's a day to have fun and escape."
In addition to the Christmas in July event, the board makes a cash donation each year from the proceeds of a charity dinner and auction. Last year the board donated $31,000. In 2010, a donation of more than $22,000 was presented.
The Road Home provided emergency shelter to 7,000 people this past year compared to 3,861 people in 2007. The shelter has a 90 percent success rate for families transitioning from the shelter to housing. According to The Road Home, a family is much better suited to address whatever challenges it faces within the comfort, safety, and privacy of its own home. In addition, children are better served having a room of their own, in which to do their schoolwork.