Former Savannah police officer helps spread holiday cheer

Updated: Dec. 23, 2017 at 7:06 PM EST
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SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - Local churches, businesses, and other groups joined forces at the West Broad YMCA to help bring Christmas joy on Saturday.

Pastor Todd Rhodes started Coppa Claus which has been giving out toys and other gifts to people in the community for 24 years. Rhodes was a Savannah police officer at the time the organization. He says he saw too many people having to make the difficult choice to pay a bill or buy a present. So, he started donating to children at local hospitals and the rest is history.

"It's a tremendous feeling," Pastor Rhodes said. "A tremendous feeling, because we get an opportunity to be a blessing to these families, to these parents. and, a lot of these people that are in need are grandparents that are actually raising their grandchildren and so it's a great feel to be able to assist them during this time of year."

Pastor Rhodes says they have helped to bring gifts to more than 12,000 kids so far with plans to help many more.

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