I got my 2018 Toys For Tots 2018 Annual Giving Statement (www.toysfortots.org) in the mail today. Seems like a strange time to be hearing from them, doesn’t it? Last year was a little bit different from other years. Normally I drop some unwrapped toys in their collection bins, and leave it at that. Unfortunately, last year I was unable to do shopping for the kids (heart surgery), so I did the next best thing I could, I sent them a check. I’ve written about Toys For Tots here before, “Thinking About Toys For Tots”, October 29, 2017. In the statement I received, Toys For Tots reported that they were able to help 7 million children last Christmas. For these kids it’s not the materialism of just getting something. It’s a reminder that someone cared enough about these children and their parents to go out of their way and get them a gift. This is an opportunity to share self-esteem with a child who may feel “less than”. I’ve seen children from needy families. They know that they have less and it hurts. When I was younger, I knew of a boy who got an egg carton one year for Christmas. That’s it, an egg carton. That’s all his parents could afford. When he brought it in to show the class, the teacher scoffed to his face and in front of the whole class. I still think about that kid.
According to the information in that mailing, 15.5 million American children live in poverty; that’s one out of every five children. Toys for Tots has been able to help slightly less than half of those children. By showing that we care, we can point the way to a better tomorrow and help break that cycle of poverty.
Pick up cool toys when you see them. I like looking for worthwhile items when they are on sale. I stockpile them and wait for the Toys For Tots bins to pop up. If we can each pick up one extra toy, we can help an extra 7 million kids. The thought of putting a smile on a child’s face puts a smile on my face. I think I get the better end of the deal.
Let your light shine.
“Together we can change the world, just one random act of kindness at a time.” Ron Hall