A Toys for Tots official reported this week that donations have been running lower than usual so far this year, although individuals and businesses wishing to help still my do so — the deadline for donating to ensure the money and gifts are prepared and delivered by Christmas Day is Monday, Dec. 12.
That is also the deadline for applications from individuals hoping to receive help with gifts for their children, according to Debbie King, Surry County Toys for Tots coordinator.
“Donations of toys this year started out slowly but have since picked since,” she said, but are still running behind the need. “We have collected or purchased about 3,000 toys to date…we are down around 3,000+ toys. Monetary donations are also down.”
She is hopeful the final weekend will lead to a big day final collection, when she and other volunteers with Toys for Tots go around town at toy drop-offs and pick up what is there.
“I do know that several businesses have been diligently collecting,” she said, adding that her cadre of volunteers was slated to pick up some of those later on Friday, as well as on Monday.
“Currently, Toys for Tots has 155 families signed up.”
In addition to the individual families, she said the group assists several area charities, Salvation Army, the Children’s Home in Dobson, the County Autism Association of Surry County, and Mercy and Truth Ministries, serving as a significant source of toys for children those agencies help.
“I’ve had some young ladies that needed some community service for school that have been helping after school. Some ladies from First Horizon Bank in Pilot Mountain and Mount Airy well be volunteering on Saturday, Dec. 10, to help us get ready for distribution starting Thursday, Dec. 15.”
King said earlier this autumn that her agency had set up toy collection boxes at several locations in Elkin, Dobson, Pilot Mountain, Mount Airy, and Siloam, along with working with several trucking companies in Surry County who are collecting toys for the cause.
In addition to donating new toys, individuals can make cash donations. Area posters advertising the effort include a QR code donors can use to make donations, or they can to go the Toys for Tots website at https://mount-airy-nc.toysfortots.org/local-coordinator-sites/lco-sites/default.aspx?nPageID=100&nPreviewInd=200&nRedirectInd=3
Individuals wishing to apply for holiday help with toys for children and youth can do so at the same website, although the deadline is Dec. 12.
“In case people don’t know, Toys for Tots is a 501(c) charity, and 97% of every dollar donated goes to buy toys,” King said.