Ridge Community Church Christmas fundraiser collects nearly $250K

It is the season to give back, and this year, the non-denominational Ridge Community Church in Greenfield is doing just that.

Kids everywhere on Christmas Eve night looked forward to what they will get from Santa. However, Ridge Community Church members were excited about what they'd be giving.

"One of the biggest things for us is to remember what Christmas is about. We always tell the kids it’s not just about the presents," church member Ayman Mageed said.

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"We are just beyond excited about what is, for us, a Christmas miracle," said Executive Pastor Jodi Tonarelli.

That miracle this year is made up of nearly $250,000 donated.

Ridge Community Church 2021 Christmas fundraiser

"We were ecstatic about that," said Mageed.

That is roughly $80,000 more than Ridge Community Church has ever raised during its annual "Live Big" campaign.

"The math is insane. We’ve been saying it’s God-sized math," Tonarelli said.

Christmas Eve at Ridge Community Church

Much of that money will go to the church's local partners, including City on a Hill in Milwaukee.

"They serve one of the ZIP codes with the highest incarceration rate for African-American men. This will provide a mentorship program for kids coming out of high school," said Tonarelli.

The gift of giving back is another thing to be grateful for this holiday season.

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"It’s been a rough few years, so this is the first year together with some extended family after that, so we’re just excited to see everybody," Allison Mageed said.

The money raised will help those in the community, but also organizations across the country and around the world.

Ridge Community Church raised roughly $80,000 more than it needed to fulfill the wishlist from its partners this year. The church will be searching for and vetting organizations to send that extra money to.

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