(NewsUSA) – The mission of the Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program is to bring hope and joy to children in need through the gift of a new toy, book, or game, at Christmastime and throughout the year.
Ongoing economic hardships challenge many families across the Nation. “Every day, we’re hearing from more hardworking parents who won’t be able to give their children anything for Christmas,” says LtGen James B. Laster, USMC (Ret.), CEO of the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation. “We can’t let these girls and boys down.”
That is why we are asking our faithful donors to give as generously as they can in time for Christmas – so no child is forgotten. No matter how an individual, company, family, or organization donates, every supporter has a story, and everyone who contributes to our mission is a ‘Secret Santa’.
What may seem like a simple contribution of time or money can set the stage for a lifetime of hope and security.
“If children experience darkness all year long, and then someone like me, dressed in a fancy uniform, says, ‘I think we can help you a little bit,’ that can give at least some of them the hope they need, and they will go on to do great things,” says Staff Sergeant James Caldwell.
SSgt Caldwell is a United States Marine, and his seventeen-year connection with the Marine Toys for Tots Program and the Foster Care system goes back to his childhood, when he and his younger sister were placed in Foster Care. Now, as a Reservist, SSgt Caldwell is deeply involved with the Toys for Tots Program each Christmas. He recalls one event in particular that continues to inspire him.
“About eight years ago, I was a door greeter for a toy distribution day. I was in my dress blues, and we had a group of Foster Care children arriving. I handed a young girl a bag of toys. She looked at me, reached into her bag and handed me a stuffed animal, and said, ‘someone needs to make sure you get a toy, too.’”
That moment when the little girl gave him one of her toys is one that SSgt Caldwell often replays in his mind, and he knows he is making a difference to boys and girls growing up in difficult circumstances similar to his.
“Everybody goes through life looking for something that will fulfill them. I was given a great opportunity as a child. So, I value the chance to give back and show these kids the possibility of a brighter future,” he says.
You too can make a difference to a disadvantaged child by being a ‘Secret Santa’. Your donation will ensure that every child in need receives the gift of hope this Christmas.
Visit www.toysfortots.org to make a difference and change a life!