MIAMI (CBS4) – The Miami Heat’s Dwyane Wade goes by a number of different nicknames; sometimes D-Wade, sometimes Flash. On Sunday more than 300 underprivileged kids gave him a new one – Santa’s Best Helper.
Wade, through his Wade’s World Foundation, treated the kids to a fun-filled afternoon and a feast at Santa’s Enchanted Forest on the corner of Bird Road and the Palmetto Expressway.
Jose Paneda (the Spanish voice of the Heat), Burnie the mascot and the Heat Dancers also were there to spread the cheer.
The children were selected from various church and youth organizations throughout Miami-Dade and Broward Counties.
Not only did the kids get chance to shoot hoops one-on-one with the NBA All-Star, there was food, rides and of course, the incredible light displays. At the end of the evening everyone was given a book bag with a toy inside.
Wade was not the only player giving back.
Team mate Udonis Haslem also helped Santa Claus hand out gifts to foster children at a special party thrown at the Police Benevolent Association Park on NW 14th Street in Miami.
Haslem, founder of the Udonis Haslem Childrens Foundation, teamed up with the Family Resource Center of South Florida, Inc. (FRC) to throw the Holiday BBQ and gift party. Along with great food and a visit from Santa, the kids had fun on a rock climbing wall, a bungee jump and bounce house. More than 500 guests attended.
The FRC has a big reason to celebrate this year. In 2010 they set a record for adoptions. The organization said they completed 121 youth adoptions – more than double its annual goal of 59 set by Our Kids of Miami-Dade/Monroe (an overseeing agency). FRC was the only Full Case Management agency in the Miami-Dade/Monroe area to achieve more than 100 adoptions for the year.