WARREN, Ohio (WYTV) – The Warren Family Mission is in dire need of toys for its 18th annual Christmas giveaway next weekend.
The Mission is asking the community for help collecting presents for children who may not otherwise have any under the tree.
Dominic Mararri, of the Warren Family Mission, said they’ve only collected about a third of their goal so far. The toy giveaway is on December 17.
“This is the difference between some families having a Christmas and not,” he said.
So far, at least 450 families will be assisted with Christmas gifts this year through the Mission’s efforts. The organization has toys for about 1,000 kids — a list organizers say continues to grow each year.
“With what has transpired in the community, with the layoffs and just the lack of opportunity for a job, we’ve seen an increase in numbers,” Mararri said.
“A lot of times, they have jobs. It’s not that they don’t, but they’re at minimum wage jobs that can’t make it through the month hardly with what they’re making, so to be able to go out and buy toys for Christmas just isn’t a priority,” said Lisa Dudley, director of development at the Warren Family Mission.
They’re hoping that the community will once again step up to help them bring a smile to a child’s face on Christmas morning.
“Such a small gift to us can mean such a big difference in the children’s lives,” Mararri said.
The Mission says toys are needed for children ages infant to 18. The following donations are suggested:
- Baby rattles
- Lego sets, learning toys, wooden blocks, puzzles
- Footballs, soccer balls, basketballs, Nerf toys
- Fingernail polish, makeup brushes, blow dryers, perfume/cologne, manicure sets, curling irons/straighteners, hair bands
- Jewelry, jewelry boxes, watches
- Crafts, coloring books, colored crayon, markers or pencil sets, doodle boards
- Scarves, purses, wallets
- Hand-held games, Board games
- CDs, music
- Gift cards
- New clothing, socks, slippers
- Snow toys, snow shoes
- Bath toys, soap sets
- Organization containers, school locker items
If you’d like to help, you can drop off new, unwrapped toys or gift cards to the Warren Family Mission’s Tod Avenue location from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday, or after hours at its men’s facility on West Market Street.