Be the change: Corpus Christi woman turns pennies into 230 gifts for kids

Janice Garcia collects pennies all year round on her daily walks. She then uses this currency to buy gifts at Christmas for children in need.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Sometimes change is a good thing — especially the way Janice Garcia sees it.

“I’ve been collecting pennies for 21 years now and walking to collect them for 21 years,” Garcia said.

We first introduced you to Janice two years ago – just before a global pandemic changed everything. She explained how illness and multiple surgeries turned her power-walking prowess into a once-in-a-lifetime fundraiser.

“I started asking God for a reason – a purpose to walk, and the first time I went out for a walk, I found seven cents,” Garcia said at the time.

At the time, she collected pennies on her daily walks and donated them to another charity at the end of the year. In 2019, it was to help the homeless cats of the Cattery.

After the pandemic, Garcia focused full-time on helping children. She now uses her money to buy gifts for children who might otherwise go without at Christmas.

“This year it’s 230. Last year it was 200,” Garcia said.

With such a big business, Garcia needs a little help. Santa Claus has his elves. Garcia has the Corpus Christi Police Department. CCPD officers will help distribute the hundreds of toys.

“Helping children who otherwise might not have Christmas to not only have food to eat, but also a nice gift to have under their tree,” said Javier Cantu, a senior CCPD officer.

As for Garcia, she shows no signs of slowing down.

“It’s been an amazing journey and I think God is ultimately responsible for that and he directed every step of me and I hope he continues to do so and I hope I continue to do so,” Garcia said. .

For the latest updates on coronavirus in Coastal Bend, click here.

More 3News on

Comments are closed.