The Holiday Tradition of Arnold Schwarzenegger: Bringing Joy to Youth Centers with Christmas Gifts

The former Terminator star Arnold Schwarzenegger recently took to TikTok to share a video in which he showed off his annual Christmas tradition of delivering gifts to the Hollenbeck Youth Center in Boyle Heights, a neighborhood in Los Angeles, California. In the caption of the video, Schwarzenegger revealed why this is something that he chooses to do every year. “There is a reason I have been handing out presents at the @hollenbeckyouthcenter in Boyle Heights for over 30 years,” wrote Schwarzenegger, 76. “When I first came to America, my friends at Gold’s Gym were so generous. They brought me in during Christmas time and made me feel so happy and included.”

In the video, Schwarzenegger can be seen handing out gifts as he talks about that first Christmas experience. “They gave me Christmas gifts, they had this beautiful Christmas tree and I felt so included here in America, even though I was a foreigner, I just came to this country,” he said. “I will never forget that sweetness and kindness and inclusion, so I wanted to do the same thing when I had the money,” he added.

The Hollenbeck Youth Center was founded in 1976 and provides opportunities for inner-city youth to participate in athletic, educational, cultural, and community enrichment programs. The Hollenbeck Youth Center clearly holds a very special place in Schwarzenegger’s heart, as he shared a different video showing him handing out turkeys at the facility. “A three-decade tradition. Giving out turkeys at the Hollenbeck Center in East LA! How do you give back this time of year?” he captioned the video.

Earlier this year, Schwarzenegger claimed that he “would make a great president” of the United States. Unfortunately for him, however, he can’t legally run for president since he was born in Austria, and the Constitution states that the leader of this country must be a natural-born citizen.