You wouldn't be a fool to think Zion People Church was actually Santa's workshop.
Last week more than 60 volunteers (elves) converged at the church and worked their way through mountains of food, toys and other gifts to make more than 300 Christmas hampers for local families in need.
The team behind Te Awamutu Operations Christmas Hampers, a community-led initiative in its second year, was blown away by the support they received.
"The operation was huge; the boxes weren't even big enough for all the stuff we had been given by the community. Everyone was really willing to help," says leader of Te Awamutu Operation Christmas Hampers, Police Constable Sasha-Lee Graves.
They also received more than $8000 in donations from a number of local businesses that went towards buying presents.
The main auditorium at Zion People Church had food and drinks spanning across the area, over 600 boxes filled the stage and piles of presents continued to grow, with a number of volunteers perched up at gift-wrapping stations.
Out of the auditorium, volunteers were cooking to make sure everyone was fed, shopping for gifts and zipping around the streets delivering the hampers to nominated families.
"The feeling of watching those hampers getting sent out the door was euphoric. All that hard work felt worthwhile because I knew the families were getting some amazing presents and treats," says Sasha.
Each hamper was made up of a food box and a present box including items such as chocolate, pasta, tinned foods, baking boxes, cereals, drinks, roast packs, popcorn, chips and much more.
To avoid spoiling the surprise for receiving families, Sasha's lips were sealed about what presents were in the hampers but she did say that "they are really cool".
Most of the food included in the hampers was collected during the initiative's food drives in late November and earlier this month.
Over three weeks, Police and volunteers hit the streets across Te Awamutu, Pirongia and Kihikihi seeking donated food and gifts from households.
They also ran a car wash fundraiser at Mitre 10 and raised $900.
A number of businesses supported the initiative – Expleo donated whole chicken vouchers, Fresh Choice donated $1000 worth of vouchers and Pak'nSave also donated vouchers.
Many more businesses also made generous cash donations.
"The business community has really got behind us this year," says Community Constable Ryan Fleming.
"I'm really rapt about how it went, it's become a community event which is what I wanted all along."
Ryan also wants to thank Zion People Church, who not only provided a space to work from but contributed a number of volunteers for the food drives and car wash.
"Either of those wouldn't have happened anywhere near as successfully as they did if it wasn't for them," says Ryan.
Given how big the job was this year, Ryan says planning for next year's Te Awamutu Operation Christmas Hampers will most likely get under way in January.