Lai Hei-tung and Mak Ka-kiu, both 14, could not contain their excitement on seeing a copy of the South China Morning Post dated December 7, 1996, yellowed by age. 'This is us and our classmates, all aged three,' they said, pointing at the picture featuring a group of children in uniforms gathered in the classroom of the Operation Santa Claus Fanling Nursery School. The two youngsters were part of the first intake at the school the year before. It has been eight years since they left, yet they never forget the time they spent there. 'At that time, I often asked my mum to take me to the nursery school, even in holidays. I just loved to meet the teachers and schoolmates there,' said Ka-kiu, who has kept in touch with teachers and schoolmates there. In 1994, Operation Santa Claus donated HK$4.2 million to the Hong Kong Society for the Protection of Children, which spent HK$660,000 to establish the day-care centre at Wah Sum Estate. The centre provides full-day pre-primary education, an integrated programme, occasional child-care services and an extended-hours service for 112 children aged from two to six. 'In the 1990s, may people were moving to Fanling but still worked in other districts. On many occasions they had to leave their young children alone at home, which is dangerous,' society director Susan So Suk-yin said. Against this backdrop, the organisation set up the centre and named it after Operation Santa Claus in memory of the help it provided. The school has served thousands of students and their parents over the past decade and still plays an important role in the daily lives of many Fanling families. Another Operation Santa Claus beneficiary, the Children's Cancer Foundation, is the only charity that has been the sole beneficiary of the campaign for three consecutive years. It received a total of HK$11 million in funding, crucial in the foundation's first three years from 1989 to 1991. It used the funding to set up permanent counselling services at the children's cancer ward at Prince of Wales Hospital, bought a marrow transplant facility for the hospital and provided support services for a family service centre in Wong Tai Sin for cancer patients and their families. Juliana Tam Cheung Po-ha, executive director of the foundation, said: 'Aside from funds, we are also very grateful to the coverage in the ... South China Morning Post and RTHK. It has proved to be a great help for our future appeal.'