FORMER NRL hard-man Mario "The Falcon" Fenech flew across the Northern Rivers today playing secret Santa and spreading Christmas cheer.

This morning he pumped $500 worth of fuel into surprised locals cars at BP Wollongbar before heading to Lismore Shopping Square to hand out vouchers to adoring locals.

Sporting a Santa hat "The Falcon" said the response from Northern Rivers people to the NRL One Community initiative that gave away $2000 in the region today had been amazing.

"A lot of people do it tough at this time of year and we have come here today to lend a helping hand," he said.

It just makes you proud to be a human being to hand out these vouchers to and you see the smile on peoples faces.

Half way through his day and budget, Mr Fenech said the response from locals had been fantastic.

"We select people who with think need the voucher...its so rewarding and obviously a lot of people are rugby league people around here so it's been great," he said.

"The NRL is a community and we are supporting the community and that's what the secret Santa campaign is all about."

An excited Cindy Creighton of Lismore said while working at Lenards Chickens she heard Fenech was in the shopping centre so she went to meet him.

"My husband is a South Sydney freak so I got this flag autographed by Mario for him," she said.

After visiting Lismore Shopping Square Fenech headed to Target Country at Casino to give away the last of his vouchers.



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