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Volunteers hand out thousands of toys, hot meals on Christmas Eve

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Posted at 11:55 PM, Dec 24, 2014
and last updated 2014-12-24 23:55:12-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- It's a Christmas Eve scene that can't help but warm your heart.

Hundreds of volunteers bringing smiles to the faces of Richmond children. Its the eighth annual Christmas For Kids parade.

Meredith Mealy, a parade driver knows the goal is to put a toy in every child's hand.

"It is always fun to see the kids excited on Christmas Eve. It's like Santa comes early" Mealy explained.

Event founder Ricky Johnson recalls eight years ago when this parade rolled through the community they only had five cars.

"Now we have more than 100 cars and we have 400 volunteers. We give out more than ten thousand toys.  It's good to be able to do this for the community" Johnson added.

Parents in Creighton, Gilpin, Whitcomb , Fairfield and Mosby courts say receiving the free toys is a true Christmas blessing. The good will and holiday spirit spread all over town. At Richmond's Paradise Lounge, organizers and volunteers with Have A Heart 4 The Homeless set out a meal fit for a king.

The guests of the hour were more than 500 homeless men and women. After being fed a hot meal, those in attendance were able to pick out gently used clothing items and were also given gifts like hats and gloves and toiletries.

The love was found whether it was from handing out toys or giving someone a hot meal. It is generosity and caring that will long be remembered