Mara's Christmas Wish, Inc.
57552 29 Palms Hwy, #250
Yucca Valley, CA 92284
Two good friends were inspired by Mara Cantelo, who was the founder of Tender Loving Christmas. Mr. Paul Hoffman was a good friend of Mara’s for over 20 and has been working with non profit organizations throughout the Morongo Basin for decades. Gigi Connell has been a friend of Mara’s and has assisted with Tender Loving Christmas for over 11 years. After the untimely death of Mara in September of 2017, Mr. Hoffman and Ms. Connell took on the almost untenable task to recreate Mara’s Tender Loving Christmas.
When Mara passed away on September 11, 2017, friends and family felt a great loss and grieved over the loss.When Gigi saw the sadness and grieving of the community, as a volunteer, she felt the need to bring people together to work through the grieving process, by continuing Mara’s traditional Christmas event. Gigi approached Mr. Hoffman for his support, and guidance in continuing Mara’s Christmas event.Mr. Hoffman, always dedicated to the Morongo Basin, agreed to provide the necessary leadership. In spite of the loss of the Mara, the community demonstrated the desire and commitment to step forward and continue Mara’s Christmas event for those who are under less fortunate situations.
With a large number of volunteers, including Bruce’s Coyote Kitchen and The Roost at Hawk’s Landing for the cooking, the Way Station who donated food, the firefighters who donated toys and managed the Toy Room with Santa’s helpers, and so many other volunteers in the community, the annual Mara’s Christmas event was very successfully achieved in 2017.
Mr. Hoffman & Ms. Connell lead the charge and with lessons learned, chose to initiate a reorganization of the event for future years. A Board of Directors was selected, and with the same dreams that Mara had, Mara’s Christmas Wish Inc., was created and shall continue to serve the Morongo Basin in the years to come, but we need your help. Please join us in “Making a Difference” in the lives of those who need our support.
Dr. Prem Salhotra and Family