The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff Station’s Annual Toy Drive was a huge success this past weekend.
Sheriff’s Department representatives joined volunteer elves Saturday December 20 for the 2009 “Toy Store”, where toys and other gifts were distributed to less fortunate families from throughout the Santa Clarita Valley.
The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff Station’s Toy Store concept is unique because it offers less fortunate parents the opportunity to be directly involved with shopping for their children’s toys, rather than just being given a toy.
“Nothing makes you feel better than helping those in need during the holiday season,” said Captain Anthony La Berge. “We are very grateful to all those in the community who make the Toy Store possible year after year.”
The idea was developed in 2003 and has proved to be a great success, allowing families to directly take part in the true holiday spirit of giving. The concept also offers the parents the flexibility of choosing an age appropriate toy.
This year’s Toy Store effort began several months ago when vouchers, given to families who were determined to be in need this holiday season, were issued to virtually every school in the Santa Clarita Valley.
The families brought their voucher to the Toy Store this past weekend where they were able to shop for a gift and then have it wrapped by volunteers who dedicated more than 300 hours of their own time.
Several residents, businesses, volunteer organizations, and virtually every school district in the Santa Clarita Valley graciously donated toys, bicycles, gift cards, money, wrapping paper and time to make the Toy Store possible, and bring the true spirit of the holidays to all those who are less fortunate in our community this year.
Deputies gave out more than 200 gift cards for less fortunate teenagers in Santa Clarita. More than 450 families, representing 1,250 children, visited the Toy Store, which prompted officials to call it a huge success.
Throughout the Toy Drive, thousands of toys and gifts are collected and later distributed to families in need through the Toy Store.
The College of the Canyons allowed the Sheriff’s Department to use their facilities for this year’s store.