2019 Christmas in the North
In December 2019, ABD cosponsored the eighth annual Christmas in the North event. On December 11, 12, and 16, Santa – along with representatives from the sponsoring companies – flew into the Athabasca communities of Stony Rapids, Black Lake, Fond du Lac, and Hatchet Lake/Wollaston and delivered an assortment of gifts to the kids. Gifts for students in Uranium City were also sent to the community.
West Wind Aviation, Cameco, and ORANO were co-sponsors of the event with their contribution going towards a re-usable gift bag and toys and games, such as sporting equipment and board games. Prince Albert Grand Council provided water bottles for all the kids and also brought along Santa to help give out the gifts. Al’s Place provided hotel and meal support for Santa and his helpers. West Wind provided round trips for the schools to give away to community members in a draw.
Athabasca Basin Development, Points Athabasca, Athabasca Basin Security, Team Drilling and Flyer Electric partnered to bring a book to Athabasca students. Every student from K-12 attending school in the Athabasca region received a book as part of their Christmas package. A wide range of books were provided, from popular graphic novels such as the Dog Man series by Dav Pilkey, to books by Indigenous authors such as My Heart Fills With Happiness by
Monique Gray Smith.
The books have become an annual gift for the past couple of years, but this was the first year that students in high school were also able to receive a book.
This year, a gift was provided for every student in the Athabasca communities from K-12 for a total of 1277 students. The combined value of all the contributions to Christmas in the north is $65,000. The event has been running for the past eight years.