December 17, 2016 by HCDE Communications
Not having a car to get to work, shop and take children to the doctor or extracurricular activities sets up hardships and road blocks for two single-parent, HCDE Head Start mothers. Due to the kindness of Bates Collision Centers owners Lee and Leila Bates, their staff and the community, the two young women drive away with rehabbed cars December 14 and 15.
“As we celebrate 18 years of the Bates gifting cars to needy moms, we know they truly live to give,” said HCDE
Superintendent James Colbert. “We are blessed to have the Bates as our Head Start community partners.”
Head Start mothers Ashley Henderson and Selina Elias were selected for the Responsible Parenting Award based on criteria like dedication to their children’s education and self-improvement, said Venetia Peacock, senior HCDE Head Start director.
Leila Bates, vice president of Bates Collision Centers, said the staff presents cars number 31 and 32 this year, and they have no plans to slow down.
“It’s an 18-year-old Christmas tradition that gets all our staff involved in the spirit of giving,” Bates said. “It can change a life, and it has changed our lives. Seeing the joy on the faces of the receiving family, especially the children when they see the car chock-full of beautifully wrapped gifts is priceless.”
The year, model and make of the two cars remain a surprise, which will be revealed through the unveiling and gifting of the cars. Cars are traditionally filled with gifts from Bates Collision, and community members donate gas, insurance and materials needed to rehab the cars.
“It’s not what you say, it’s what you do,” said Lee
Bates, president of Bates Collision Centers. “We’ve found a way to take what we ‘do’ every day and use it to help change the lives of deserving, hard-working families each year.”
Henderson received her car on December 14 at Bates Collision Center North Channel location, 15532 I-10 East, Channelview, Texas. The Galena Park resident is mother to HCDE Head Start Fifth Ward student Kaysin, 3.
Elias and daughter Camile, 3, got keys to their car on December 15 at the Bates Collision Center Baytown location, 3219 N. Main, in Baytown, Texas. Camile attends the HCDE Baytown Head Start Center.
News coverage included the Baytown Sun, the Houston Chronicle, KTRK-13 and Telemundo.