Toys For Tots Kicks Off in Sussex County
MILLSBORO, Del. - The Marine Corps League, Detachment 704 launched its Toys for Tots campaign on Wednesday. More than 150 volunteers will work to pack up and deliver presents to thousands of children across Sussex County.
Towers of toys now line the walls inside the Allen Harim Warehouse in Millsboro. About 70 drop-off sites from across the county empty their toys out here for volunteers to then organize them by age and gender.
"It's a lot more intense than a lot of people think," says Senior Vice Commandant Tim Shepke. "It's not just toys coming in and toys coming out. There's an inventory that's got to be done."
Shepke says the Marine Corps League in Millsboro has held this drive in Sussex County for about thirty years. From bicycles to life size dolls, volunteers are thankful for any and all donations to help children ten and under. Shepke says one generous donor even dropped off a truckload of drones.
"We would like to have them brand new but whatever you're donation is, we'll be more than glad to take," says Shepke.
Four presents were given to each child in about 750 families across Sussex County in 2018. This year the goal is to give out at least 6 presents plus 4 stocking stuffers to each child in 900 families.
The Sussex County Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 2 is hoping to make a difference in its first year volunteering. President Bob Schappert says they're lending a hand in return for help with their Share Your Christmas campaign to give to a family in need on Christmas.
"We identify a very needy family in Sussex County and we find out what their needs are," says Schappert. "Last year we got toys and clothes, everything for them. We had a big caravan and law enforcement and the fire department delivered it Christmas Eve."
Nancy Anderson has been volunteering with Toys for Tots for 8 years. "I became a driver and I help in the warehouse," she says. "My mom was a Marine and so of course, I respect the Marine Corps. I never got to have children."
Anderson and the other volunteers have the same goal. "We're here to help the kids," she says.
Toys for Tots will collect gifts in Sussex County until December 11th. The toys will be given out from December 13th until December 19th.