A comunity effort is underway to have St. John participate in the U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots Foundation by donating unused toys to needy children for the holiday season.
“The primary goal of the Foundation is to deliver, through a shiny new toy at Christmas, a message of hope to needy youngsters that will motivate them to grow into responsible, productive, patriotic citizens and community leaders,” according to the web site toysfortots.org.
“Toys for Tots began in 1947 when Major Bill Hendricks, USMCR, and a group of Marine Reservists in Los Angeles collected and distributed 5,000 toys to needy children,” according to the web site toysfortots.org. “The idea came from Bill’s wife, Diane. In the fall of 1947, Diane handcrafted a Raggedy Ann doll and asked Bill to deliver the doll to an organization, which would give it to a needy child at Christmas.”
“When Bill determined that no agency existed, Diane told Bill that he should start one and he did,” stated toysfortots.org. “The 1947 pilot project was so successful that the Marine Corps adopted Toys for Tots in 1948 and expanded it into a nationwide campaign.”
“Over the 58 years of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program, Marines have distributed more than 351 million toys for 166 million needy children. This charitable endeavor has made U.S. Marines the unchallenged leaders in looking after needy children at Christ-mas,” according to toysfortots.org.
“Over its 15 year life span, the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation has supplemented local toy collections with more than 64.5 million toys valued at more than $344 million; plus has provided promotion and support materials valued at over $3.9 million,” stated toysfortots.org.
The Marine Corps Toys for Tots Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not for profit charity. Donations are tax deductible.
New, Wrapped Toys
Donated toys should be new and gift-wrapped and marked according to gender and age of recipient.
The St. John drop sites for Toys for Tots are: Cruz Bay Canines Cats and Critters at Palm Plaza; St. John Tradewinds at The Marketplace; Big Planet at Mongoose Juction; The Gifft Hill School, Connections; Low-key Watersports at Wharfside Landing and the Skinny Skinny Legs Complex in Coral Bay.
For more information call Joe Palminteri at Cruz Bay Canines Cats and Critters at 693-7780.