Christmas is two weeks from today, but between now and the end of next week, two groups are in need for collecting more toys of area youngsters.
Both the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots and the Wishing Tree programs have experienced a decline in donated toys; in fact, the situation is so dire that Wishing Tree, which is sponsored by CC Communications ITPA and the Churchill County Social Services, still has children remaining to be adopted.
Every year hundreds of Churchill County residents donate toys to these two groups, ensuring a child’s life will be a little brighter for Christmas. The community’s generosity during past years has been so overwhelming that more children received toys or additional toys were given to each child.
Community members have generously donated toys to both organizations, but the appearance of the Salvation Army, ironically, may deprive local children of receiving toys.
The Salvation Army has done commendable charity work since William Booth worked tirelessly to establish the organization in London during the 1860s. Since that time, the Salvation Army operates in many counties and provides assistance for such things as adult rehabilitation, veterans affairs services, prison ministries, hunger relief, housing and homeless services ... and the list goes on.
In a partnership with Walmart, the Salvation Army is working with the retail giant to solicit toys for children — except local donors need to know of one thing. Most of the toys collected by the Salvation Army and Walmart will not stay in Churchill County but instead, will be distributed to communities in all Northern Nevada. The “Fill the Truck Toy Drive” has been collecting thousands of toys for needy children, and the partnership calls for Salvation Army boxes to be placed at 3,500 stores for three days with the final day being Sunday.
As we said the gesture is noble by both Walmart, which has allowed the Toys for Tots to set up their booths in front of the store, and the Salvation Army, but we wonder if Walmart executives were aware their local communities and what programs and services were already in place. They would have discovered that Churchill County has two major programs for collecting and providing toys for local children.
There is still time to help local children to receive toys. The Toys for Tots has collection locations spread across the valley — including Naval Air Station Fallon’s Navy Exchange store — for residents to drop off a new unwrapped toy; likewise, Wishing Tree’s deadline for toys is Tuesday, and there is still time to adopt a child, donate a new toy or make a cash donation.
For information on Wishing Tree, call Dawn at 775-423-7654, ext. 1269 or 775-217-8773.
Local children are depending on the community’s support to make this a cheerier Christmas.
Editorials written by the LVN Editorial Board appear on Wednesdays.