Saturday, December 5, children from three LAPD Youth Programs were treated to a special visit by Santa Claus and Nancy Cartwright, best known as the voice of Bart Simpson. Sitting in a magnificent, custom-made red sled, Santa (Cortney Lofton) and Mrs. Claus (Nancy Cartwright) distributed gifts to nearly three hundred children.
“Thank you so much for a great event!” said LAPD North Hollywood Captain Rafael Ramirez. “So many happy faces. It’s been a rough year, and this is just what these families needed to kick off the Holiday Season.”
Decorated LAPD “black and whites” from North Hollywood Division, Mission Division and Foothill Division added to the festivities. As cars caravanned through a massive parking lot in Burbank, officers distributed presents and took pictures of each child posing COVID-19 near “Santa” and “Mrs. Claus”.
Lofton, aka Santa, is the founder of The Red Sled Santa Foundation. He has made it his purpose to bring the holiday spirit to low-income, disabled and terminally ill children in the Valley. “There is no greater joy than to bring a smile to a child’s face,” said Cortney, who runs a Valley contracting company from January through November. “December is for Santa and the children.”
Cartwright, the Honorary Mayor of Northridge for fifteen years and a member of the North Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce, founded the non-profit organization Happy House, helping Valley children learn to make good choices in life. “It is a pleasure to help the LAPD give gifts to so many deserving children. The LAPD Youth Programs are amazing, and it’s an honor to support these wonderful officers.”
LAPD Youth Programs – Junior Cadets, Cadets, Jeopardy and PALS – are community programs for children ages 8 to 17, designed to help children maximize their scholastic and leadership potential. “Our Youth Programs are vital,” said LAPD Deputy Chief Jorge Rodriguez. “The time we invest in our children today is our best guarantee for a better tomorrow. Thank you to all the volunteers who helped put this remarkable day together. The children will remember this day for the rest of their lives.” North Pole kudos to all the volunteer elves and the San Fernando Valley Partnership for donating a beautiful banner.