Yuba-Sutter Toys for Tots is gearing up for a very active Christmas season assisting an estimated 1800 children in Yuba and Sutter Counties to have a joyous holiday.
“A tremendous number of children are being raised in households with low incomes in both counties” said Bob Harlan, Yuba-Sutter area coordinator for Toys for Tots.
“The community assists in providing toys, games and sporting goods for children who might not otherwise have anything to open,” Harlan added.
The shorter time span between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year, in conjunction with a higher demand for assistance, are making for an uphill battle to get about 4000 gifts for children ages newborn through 12 collected in just 21 days.
“The organizations we assist need gifts for the children they serve by the 10th of December and our distribution takes place on December 20 and 21,” Harlan Said.
There are donation boxes at 61 local businesses, who will assist in collecting gifts through December 19. A list of those locations can be seen on the Yuba-Sutter Toys for Tots Facebook page or online at http://yuba-city-ca.toysfortots.org.
In addition to the drop-off sites, there are multiple special events to collect gifts:
-Once again this year, Results Radio will conduct five live broadcasts, airing live reports on all three radio stations (KUBA, Power 95.5 & Country 103.1). The events are in Yuba City from 3:00-5:00 p.m.: Tuesday at Grange Coop; Wednesday at Dunkin’ Donuts; Friday at Evans’ Furniture; and Monday, December 16 at Rush Personnel. The fifth broadcast will be from 11:00-1:00 on Saturday, December 14 at SunStor Solar inside the Yuba-Sutter Mall.
In addition to the events, Yuba-Sutter Toys for Tots received a total of $5000 this Fall from the Yuba City and Marysville Walmart’s and the Yuba City Sam’s Club to spend at their stores.
“We are so grateful to the large donations from Walmart and Sam’s Club, and the incredible one-day collections from the Yuba City Firefighters at Target in Yuba City. But we are also so grateful to the hundreds of smaller donors who go out of their way to give money and gifts targeted to children in need,” Harlan said.
Toys for Tots is most interested in receiving gifts with a retail value of $14.00 or higher, however smaller items can be gifted in multiples or as stocking stuffer items.
Donated gifts must be new in original packaging and unwrapped.
Toys for Tots is an organization which has virtually no overhead costs. They receive free rent for their distribution center location through Hilbers, Inc., they pay no other fees for storage or utilities and all people involved are volunteers.
“All cash donations are sent overnight to a processing center and 100% comes back to us to spend for gifts for children in need,” Harlan said.
“Even more amazing, is that we receive some $15,000 in gifts for our children from the Toys for Tots Foundation from national wholesalers at no cost to us!” Harlan added.
Toys for Tots began in Yuba and Sutter Counties in 2002 as a project of Harlan Communications, which then owned KUBA and Cool 104 Radio stations. Subsequent owners have partnered with Harlan to continue the program through heavy radio promotion and providing storage space for Toys for Tots throughout the year.
Toys for Tots partners locally with the Salvation Army, which provides intake services for the families Toys for Tots serves through the family distribution days as well as their own. Salvation Army also provides boxes of food for each family.
Toys for Tots serves about 600 youth directly, with another 1200 through other organizations who carefully choose families in need who will receive gifts. This year, there are eight local organizations requesting assistance, including SoYouCan and CHiPs For Kids.