Operation Christmas Magic


For Immediate Release


The professional  networking group, the Lakeland Business Leaders is seeking donors for a project they are calling “Operation Christmas Magic.” Each year, LBL looks for needs in the community and works to fill those needs by bringing the business community together for a common goal – supporting those less fortunate during the holiday season.

This year, with the help of the LBL, Anchor House will receive a 2003 Dodge Neon which was donated by a member of the community and made new again thanks to LBL members. Anchors House and LBL agree that the purpose of this donation is to assist with transportation when a young man turns 18 and obtains a driver’s license. He must be a hardworking student and have a job that will support the cost of insurance and maintenance for the car. This privilege may be earned through academic improvements, team work, and volunteerism in the community. It takes all of these qualities to ascertain that a young man reaching adulthood can handle the responsibilities that come with owning and operating a personal vehicle.

Fredric Velez, Program tor at Anchor House, had this to say about this gift. “This will encourage our young men who are seeking to develop their independence through our extended foster care program. Just the simple opportunity of owning a vehicle will encourage youth residents to further their education, seek employment and for those who are employed, it will help them retain their jobs.”

Another member of LBL, Shaun Wren, who from ages 13-18 was a resident and is now the incoming board president of Anchor House said he is very happy that LBL is working to help these young men. “Had it not been for Anchor House and a few key people, my life may have been very different than what it is today.”

Chrissanne Long, the founder of the Lakeland Business Leaders, feels grateful to have so much support from the community, “Operation Christmas Magic is a collaboration of people with kind hearts and a desire to make our community stronger. LBL is more than just business connections. It’s about all aspects of our community. We want to raise the bar and create an environment in which people who want to help can and the people who need help receive it. Isn’t that what “Community” is all about?”

LBL members like Sarah Keener of Northwestern Mutual, who has made a considerable donation to the project also plans to participate in the delivery of the Christmas Magic on Christmas Eve Day. Sarah and other members have come together to make repairs to the car. Thanks to Main Street Garage in Lakeland for discounting parts and donating labor to get the car in peak condition for Anchor House.

Donations can be made online at http://lkld.co/LBLXmasMagic  Please use the comment box to add “Operation Christmas Magic” to indicate that your donation is for this project.

Checks can be mailed to

Anchor House Project

C/O Lakeland Business Leaders

233 N. Tennessee Avenue

Lakeland, FL 33801



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