The Oz Blog View about stuff while living in the Land of Oz


Toys for Tots

One of my favorite times every year during my time as a Marine Reservist was Toys for Tots. Every year during November and most of December the Marine Reserves will have boxes all over town and go to events to help collect toys for under privileged children all over town. Normally the entire reserve unit I was with would drill at the same time every year, but during those months the unit would tend to split up by different groups to help out as much as we could to make sure that as many toys were collected and distributed as could be.

I remember many of events even being outside and I would be freezing my butt off, but then I would just think about my children and think how much I would appreciate something like this and that helped me really enjoy doing any Toys for Tots event. It even seemed like some people would create events just to bring the Marines out to help collect toys for children. It is stuff like those types of events that really help out any community and can bring in some toys that children really would love to have.

One of the biggest events each year that would allow the Marines to collect enough toys to fill a box truck was one of the Chiefs home games in early December. I only got to work one of these events, but there would be a couple Marines posted at every main entrance to the actual stadium, and I could not believe the support and amount of toys that showed up. The gate I was at with a close friend of mine could of filled up 3 of the normal Toys for Tots box to include 3 bicycles and there was even one gate that had 6 bikes.

Not every toy is great though as the Marines would tend to get a lot of toys donated from smaller unknown companies with toys that nobody had ever really heard of or seen, but we all have to remember that it is the thought that counts and I am sure that several kids still enjoyed anything that they got. It never seems to be enough though as orders just kept coming in even as the toy surplus pile got smaller and smaller. We would have to give kids toys that they were either too big or too little for.

So there never seems to be enough toys. I am writing this blog post to try and help get more awareness for stuff like this. You don't have to buy anything big or expensive like a bike or video game system like that. Just something simple that is $5, $10, or maybe even $15 would make a big difference in a child's Christmas. Yeah you may never get to see the kids actually play with any of the toys, but neither did I. Do you also think that the Marines would just go around collecting toys to give to kids that didn't need them? I highly doubt that.

So this year please consider going out and getting a toy for one of these kids. Any age range is fine, because there are even teens that don't get a single thing each year. If you have a kid or more then take them out to the toy store and have them pick out a toy that they would possibly like and then have them drop it off in one of the Toys for Tots boxes all over town. If you can't find any then contact your local Marine Reserve Unit or even google Toys for Tots to try and find out more information.


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