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Thousands of needy kids get presents at weekend’s “Miracle En El Barrio”

TUCSON – Over two thousand underprivileged kids received gifts today thanks to the 16th annual “Miracle En El Barrio”.  It all went down on 12th & Ajo at the St. John’s Catholic Church.  It is the largest Christmas toy giveaway that is sponsored by for-profit businesses.  Organizers, Steve Nunez (KVOA Executive Producer) and Jon Volpe (NOVA Home Loans CEO), started 16 years ago because, as kids, they knew what it was like to grow up in marginal environments and without many Christmas gifts.  Here’s more-as-seen-on-location at Friday afternoon:

“Miracle en el Barrio is extremely important to Jon Volpe, CEO of NOVA Home Loans, and I because we know that feeling of waking up on Christmas morning and not having a toy,” said Nunez. “We made it our mission to make sure no child ever goes without on Christmas morning.”

Miracle En El Barrio on Dec. 21, 2018. (Co-founders Jon Volpe & Steve Nunez alongside of Santa Clause, Andres “Tequila DJ” Gonzalez, & Paul Cicala)

In addition to gifts, many of the local businesses will be giving out free food, so each kid will leave with a toy and a meal. Plus there will be live entertainment and activities for the whole family.

Miracle en el Barrio is a Christmas celebration for kids who may not otherwise have one.

“The beauty about miracle is that it’s not just about creating miracles and turning miracles into smiles by giving a child a toy, it also comes full circle because miracle is now giving these kids the gift of giving in return,” Nunez said. “Now we see them come back to the event and they want to give back to the community. That to me is the beauty of Miracle en el Barrio.”

The event runs from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Dec. 21.

TUCSON – The co-creator of the “Miracle En El Barrio” gift give-away for needy kids in Tucson also handed out free tickets to the upcoming Nova Home Loans Arizona Bowl.  Jon Volpe (who also helped create the Tucson-area bowl game played on December 29th) handed out tickets to kids who also lined up for free gifts.  Along with  Miracle En El Barrio co-creator Steve Nunez, of KVOA, Volpe also helped organize a fundraiser to get over 2,000 kids gifts to kids on Tucson’s south side.  Here’s more as-seen-on KVOA sportscast:


Paul Cicala

Paul Cicala

2-Time "Edward R. Murrow Award" winner as both sports & news reporter; Multiple-EMMY nominations; Multiple Associated Press (AP) Awards in sports & news reporting/anchoring; Named "Best of Best" Sportscaster by "Tucson Weekly" readers for 3 straight years.
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