In December, Intel NM held the 14th Annual Children’s Winter Carnival. Intel employees turn part of the building into a winter wonderland and invite students from Title 1 Elementary Schools to visit and enjoy the day. This year, 45 students were paired with an Intel sponsor and together they spent the morning playing games, eating popcorn, snow cones, and chicken strips and having a great time. Several organizations set up booths including Explora, The Natural History Museum, Presbyterian Healthcare, EXOS, The National Museum of Nuclear Science and History and The Anderson Abruzzo International Balloon Museum. Orbit and Mr. and Mrs. Claus also visited. Each student received a bag with goodies ranging from a blanket, hat, gloves to a toothbrush and toothpaste. The employee sponsors also provided gifts for each of the students. The intention of this carnival is to give these students a day of fun and come away knowing that people care about them. For the 14th year, that was accomplished.
Comments from the school councilors included: “The smiles and tears on the parents faces showed their appreciation. You blessed a lot of people.” “Every day since the carnival, I see our students on the playground wearing their new shoes and clothing. The students seem more calm and at peace following this amazing experience. One student’s parent called to express her gratitude and said her son wore his new clothes to church last weekend and was so proud to show her what he received.” “I loved, loved, loved that Explora, Natural History Museum, Balloon Fiesta Park, and other representatives from the community were present and involved the students in hands on activities and learning. We were able to learn how hot air balloons work with hair dryers to demonstrate and touch fossils and rocks from the museum. The kids were able to decorate Christmas cookies, and I thought about how many of the kids were probably experiencing these things for the first time.”
At the end of a very tiring and yet energizing day, 45 elementary students, a dozen school staffers, 2 school bus drivers (who had to figure out how to get all the stuff(including bikes) on the bus ride back to school), and 75 or so Intel employees went home feeling pretty good about their day.