The Blue Angels Foundation provides Christmas presents to families in need, but this year they need help


Editor note: Bernie Hallum, who founded The Blue Angels Foundation, is the co-host of “Choir Practice” – a weekly show involving bourbon, police and ‘murica.  It can be found here.  

Our team at Law Enforcement Today is proud to support and endorse this incredible organization.  If you don’t have funds to help contribute to these little kids… please at least share this article.  Thank you!

MANCHESTER, CT –  This year has created unprecedented challenges for families to overcome.

Financial hardship is becoming increasingly common and, with the holidays fast approaching, many families are struggling to afford Christmas shopping. Thankfully, one nonprofit is stepping in to provide support for families in Manchester, Connecticut.

The Blue Angels Foundation is a nonprofit that works to provide aid to struggling community members. The charity was founded in 2001 by Bernie Hallums, a retired officer who saw a need in his community.

In an interview with Law Enforcement Today, Hallums said that he created the nonprofit because “it was just the right thing to do.”

The foundation works to provide support for multiple causes throughout the year, but December is by far their busiest month. For several years, the nonprofit has held large toy drives and fundraisers to provide presents and throw a Christmas party for children and families.

On Christmas morning, local law enforcement officers volunteer to deliver toys to children in the community.

The nonprofit has set up a GoFundMe to raise money for its holiday parties and Christmas Day deliveries. The Blue Angels Foundation’s GoFundMe page reads:

“The Foundation’s main purpose is to support our families in need by providing holiday gifts and joy to children twelve and under. 

“Annually, we host a holiday party for 400 children and families which includes gifts from a wish list, lunch, activities, and a visit from Santa. Additionally, we partner with our police department to provide and deliver toys to 100 children on Christmas Day.”

Hallums spoke about the selfless actions of himself and local officers, saying:

“We have community policing officers who get very much involved in the program on Christmas Day and just showing these families that, no matter what’s going on in other parts of the country, we’re all one big family and we need each other to get through these hard times.”

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The founder later said that officers choose to volunteer to give out toys on Christmas morning because they feel it’s important for the community’s children:

“It’s amazing that we can reach these families and touch these families and give them a bit of our heart. For the officers involved too, they don’t have to be out there on Christmas Day their not getting paid. They chose to do this because they feel it’s important for these kids.”

Additionally, the nonprofit gives aid to other charitable causes in the community.

Hallums stated:

“We try to support anything that’s going on with the kids in our community. Due to the generosity of our community a lot of times we will have toys and things available for officers to put in their cruisers or when a family gets burned out of a house.”

Hallums later added that the nonprofit works to give “whatever the community needs to help our kids and the families.”

Unfortunately, COVID has placed an additional burden on the foundation’s fundraising efforts. The pandemic has forced the nonprofit to cancel one of their largest fundraisers of the year. The Blue Angels Foundation is working to make up for the loss in donations and provide toys for children in Manchester.

The foundation’s GoFundMe page explains:

“Due to COVID-19, we are not able to hold our traditional Comedy Night fundraiser, which we use to support our community initiatives. We desperately need your help.”

The description continues:

“We anticipate a record number of applicants this year as a result of COVID-19 and its impact on our families. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, we have also had to restructure our holiday event into a contactless gift-giving event, but we are committed to continuing to help our families.”

In addition to the GoFundMe page, the charity is also holding a toy drive to gather toys for families in need. The Connecticut Valley Brewing Company in Manchester, Connecticut is hosting the “Stuff A Cruiser” event on December 5th in conjunction with the Blue Angels Foundation and the South Windsor Police Department. The nonprofit is accepting donations of toys, gift cards, and cash.

The Blue Angels Foundation provides an essential lifeline to families in need, but they need support to continue helping Manchester families. The nonprofit’s donation page says:

“If you are able to help with a donation of any amount, it will make a huge difference in a child’s life by supporting our community’s families.”

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