For the 15th straight year, New Hanover Regional Medical Center has collected and distributed Christmas gifts to local families in need. EMS worker Jeremy Huffman said, "We look forward to it every year at EMS. It's a bright spot in a dreary work environment." This year nearly 60 local families in need will have their Christmas wishes granted by employees at New Hanover Regional Medical Center. New Hanover Regional Medical Center David Fredrickson said, " New Hanover Regional Medical Center has always been a healer medically. With this event we're able to heal in different ways." It's part of the national adopt-a-family program. Employees at New Hanover choose to sponsor a local family and around Christmas time, they wrap and deliver that family the gifts on their Christmas wish list. This year gifts ranged from toys, to electronics to bicycles -- enough to fill four ambulances and four other emergency vehicles. Huffman said, "We normally see folks at their worst, you know, in a lot of distress. We're very proud and privileged to be able to do this." Even though EMS workers make deliveries, other hospital employees say the event affects them as well. "It really lightens the mood here at the hospital. All of our departments get involved. All of our employees are really involved. It brings us closer together," Hoffman said. "We can give back to community, show them some Christmas cheer and show them that we're always there for them." The gifts were distributed to a number of local organizations who will deliver the gifts to deserving families by Christmastime.
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