Toys for Tots in Northern Michigan is busy gearing up to distribute toys for area kids in need.
The assistant coordinator for Northwest Michigan Toy For Tots, Mike Kent said the organization has been collecting items since Nov. 18.
Kent said they will need about 26,000 toys to serve kids in their five county area.
Meijer will be matching the toys that are dropped off Friday at the toy box. The grocery store chain also donated $10,000.
Kent said they used some of those funds for ‘Shop With A Hero’, where local kids earn the privilege to shop for other kids in need with the help of local heroes, which includes the Coast Guard, Marines, police and fire.
“On the surface, it’s a very superficial thing. It’s toys, it’s Christmas, it’s kids, but it’s much bigger than that. It is restoring dignity to families. It is parents that are going into this holiday season that have no idea how they are going to pay for Christmas this year. And they just want their kids to have a Christmas like everyone else and they don’t know how they’re going to do it,” said Kent.
The Toys for Tots campaign wraps up Dec. 17, so there’s still time to donate. They will be sorting toys over the weekend.
The toys will be distributed to 14 different agencies, who then distribute them to kids in the area.