Several small children stood in the cold with their parents Wednesday, waiting to pick up boxes from the Merced County Food Bank. And many got a special surprise when music legend MC Hammer showed up.
"There's a lot of areas in the state that can use the help, and I was just doing my part," said Hammer. "One of the places in picked out immediately at the top of my list is Merced."
The entertainer says he feels a special bond to Merced because he's stopped here many times throughout his life on trips home to Oakland. He even serves on the UC Merced Foundation Board of Trustees.
"It's always had a special place in my heart," said Hammer. "And I'm just glad to able to be a blessing in some aspect to Merced."
That's why he teamed up with "Feed the Children" to sponsor this give-away and four others across Northern California
Merced resident, Jessica Alatore said, "The food it helps a lot, especially since we're trying to get a holiday dinner going on."
Each of the four hundred families who pre-registered in Merced received one box of food, one box of hygiene items, and a third box of Avon products.
Kristin Lovato is a full time student and fast food employee who says the items will help her care for her four children.
Lovato said, "It really is a blessing to have people that care and that really want to be here to help us out."
The food bank works to help families year round, serving as many as 100 thousand people per month in Merced County. But organizers say this donation comes at just the right time.
Food Bank Volunteer Executive Director, Phyllis Legg said, "It makes you feel good that you're able to do what you can to make their Christmas a little better and make sure they have food on the table."