EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

December 16, 2012

Raytheon employees fill Santa Fund's sack with big donation

Raytheon is a big company with a big heart.

Employees of the defense systems manufacturer realized that during this holiday season some of their friends and neighbors in the Merrimack Valley might not be able to have the merriest of Christmases. So the company made one of its largest donations in recent memory to the Santa Fund.

Raytheon employees raised more than $7,300 for The Eagle-Tribune’s annual giving campaign, according to Michelle Hudson, who is the company’s customer engagement manager.

“Each year we get a team of volunteers and some folks dress up in Santa suits or as Rudolph and there’s a group of carolers who like to sing,” Hudson said. “We really have a great time.”

Hudson said donation buckets are passed around from office to office, desk to desk and through Raytheon’s manufacturing facility.

“We sing carols and we have the Santa Fund buttons, handed out to those who donate. And we walk the entire facility the entire day. We do it in the morning and the afternoon,” Hudson said.

The exact total raised was $7,308.80.

Hudson said the Santa Fund is an important initiative tradition for the people in the Merrimack Valley. She said the people at Raytheon know that in the small communities in New England, people who may need a little assistance for the holidays are not necessarily strangers.

“We understand the need,” Hudson said. “It was nice to see the employees reach out. People really do want to help.”

Last year, the Santa Fund raised more than $138,000.

(Editor’s note: Last week, we mistakenly ran a photo of a previous year’s donation by Raytheon.)

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