SAN ANTONIO -

The 70,000-square-foot warehouse that the Elf Louise Project calls home on  the West side of San Antonio is packed with toys, bags of gifts, Santa suits and volunteers wrapping gifts in this final few days before heading out into the community. 

And according to its founder, Louise Locker, this year has been a surprisingly rough one.

"We still need about $60,000 to $70,000 to meet our budget, but overall, the response has been fantastic,” said Locker

Executive Director Bill Harrison pointed with pride at the 5,600 bags of gifts headed to needy San Antonio families. 

They were wrapped by volunteers, using donated gift wrapping materials, over the course of 10 days. 

Beginning on Thursday, the Santa Teams will begin delivering in person.

“We will run 120 Santa routes on Saturday and another 100 and something on Sunday.  It takes this long just to get all these toys delivered to the children,” he said. 

It’s been operating this way for 43 years in Bexar County.

The Santa teams are running a little short on Santas, too. There are 222 Santa suits ready to go, but there is a need for more volunteers to wear them and visit the families to deliver the gifts.

If you would like to volunteer your time or make a cash donation to the Elf Louise Project, you can contact the organization at www.elflouise.com.