STROUDSBURG, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — The countdown to Christmas is on and the Stroudsburg community rallied together to grant the Christmas wishes of children in need.
The Stroudsmoor Inn where 100 families are lined up waiting for Santa to arrive for the Olsen Christmas Wish Fundraiser.
Now the annual fundraiser started back in 2006 after Stroud Area Regional Police officer Jeff Olsen passed away.
The department started raising money for his children for Christmas and then it turned into helping children each year in the community.
Organizers tell me they raised about $50,000 to buy each child their Christmas wish list and volunteers have been wrapping the presents all afternoon.
I spoke with Jeff Olsen’s sister who said the fundraiser stops the memories of him from fading away.
“Jeff was always the first to help out anyone who needed it. The first to make you laugh. So out of my family’s heartbreak, to have other families get a Christmas miracle, it’s the best-case scenario out of the worst-case scenario,” explained Patty Muller, sister of Jeff Olsen.
The children got a sneak peek of all the presents and are anxiously waiting to open all of them after Santa arrives for dinner.