Toys for Tots helps families ahead of the holidays

Published: Dec. 6, 2019 at 5:43 PM CST
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At the Salvation Army building in Eau Claire, thousands of toys are trickling in as part of the 'Toys for Tots' campaign.

"Some places really struggle to get toys, and it just doesn't seem like we ever really struggle to get toys that we need. We always have a good amount of gifts to give the kids for Christmas so they have a really happy Christmas unwrapping gifts under the tree," said Toys For Tots Coordinator Amanda Radle.

At the more than 100 donation locations around the city, all the donation boxes were collected on Friday.

Dozens of volunteers are helping to make sure all the toys are ready.

"We as realtors love to try and get into the community and offer a service that is lacking. Whether it's volunteer time, whether it's donations of monetary things like that. We like to get into the community and spread the love," said Megan Adams.

For Adams, being able to help out with Toys for Tots has a special meaning.

"I love Toys for Tots. When I was younger we actually, one Christmas, fell on hard times and needed Toys for Tots. So it means a lot to me specifically to be here and to be able to give back now because I was able to receive the benefits in the past," she explained.

Over 1,100 families are signed up to receive gifts through Toys for Tots this holiday season.

"A lot of the families, it's the parents that come in we don't see a lot of the kids that come in. But they're struggling, the parents are struggling with a loss of job, medical issues is a big issue with people just not being able to afford Christmas gifts for their kids," said Radle.

More than 8,000 toys, everything from stuffed animals to board games, are expected to be donated this year.

For now, volunteers are getting everything ready for the distribution day in less than two weeks so every child in the Chippewa Valley can have a happy holiday.

Toys can still be dropped off at the Salvation Army on Hastings Way in Eau Claire until Dec. 18.

If there are any families in need of toys, there is a late sign-up day for the Toys for Tots campaign on Thursday Dec. 19

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