By Samantha Joseph
MARTIN COUNTY -- A local group's Christmas celebration will help make the upcoming year brighter for hundreds of children.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Palm Beach and Martin counties is holding its "big holiday event" on Dec. 1.
The Christmas festival and celebration is a major fundraiser for the nonprofit, which is matching 275 children in Martin and Palm Beach counties with adult mentors.
The group also teaches career skills to eighth graders at Murray and Stuart middle schools by matching them with mentors from businesses across the county. The program teaches skills such as workplace etiquette, appropriate dress, resume writing and even pays a stipend.
"We've been mentoring for many years, and it's always rewarding," said Jeanie Flanagan, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Palm Beach and Martin counties' customer relations specialist.
Now in its second year, the festival includes Christmas tree raffles and performances by area children, who will sing, dance and provide other entertainment.
"It's an exciting event," said Aleisha M. Garcia, Big the group's marketing and event coordinator. "Big Brothers Big Sisters will also be selling holiday cards at this event, where Santa Claus will make an appearance."
The "big holiday event" is one of several during the season, as part of the nonprofit's efforts to thank supporters and raise funds to support its programs.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Palm Beach and Martin Counties is also planning a golf tournament to raise $20,000 next month.
The Dec. 7 fundraiser is set for Hobe Sound Golf Club.
For more information, call (561) 727-3450.