Toys for Tots drop-off sites set

Published 9:32 pm Monday, November 14, 2011

The boys in one group of Cub Scouts aren’t just giving back to their community with their service projects — they’re also giving to their peers.

On Saturday, the Phoenix Patrol, from the Pack 73’s Webelo den at Magnolia United Methodist Church, will collect new, unwrapped toys to donate to Toys for Tots and help other children have a better Christmas.

Den leader Heidi Wing said the group collected for the organization last year, and she thinks it’s an excellent opportunity for the Scouts to give back to those who are less fortunate.

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“It’s great to teach the children to give back to other children,” she said. “It’s an unselfish thing. It really gives them a good feeling.”

Scouts will be outside of the IHOP on North Main Street on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. accepting donations of toys for all ages of children.

“Everybody needs it,” Wing said. “There isn’t an age limit.”

People will be able to walk up and drop off their donations, or they simply can drive up to the curb and hand their donations to a Scout.

“We’re hoping to fill as many boxes as possible,” Wing said.

She said she hopes people will help the Scouts out as much as they can because it shows the boys their community supports them, just as they are supporting the community.

“It just shows these children that there are people in the community helping out with them,” Wing said. “You have to stand behind them and tell them this is a good thing you are doing.”

In addition to the Scouts’ collection, residents can drop off donations for Toys for Tots at other locations in Suffolk, as well, according to John Woleben, Suffolk’s Toys for Tots coordinator.

Collection boxes have been set up at Duke Automotive and Mike Duman Auto Sales on North Main Street, GTL Transport Company on Dill Road and Nansemond-Suffolk Academy on Pruden Boulevard.

In North Suffolk, A. Dodson’s on Bridge Road and the AT&T store in Harbour View have boxes.

For more information on Toys for Tots, visit www.toysfortots.org.

Monetary donations also can be made to the Cheer Fund, which raises money each year to help purchase toys for the Toys for Tots program in Suffolk.

The Cheer Fund was started by the Suffolk News-Herald sometime last century — during the Great Depression, it is believed — and initially provided money for clothing and food for needy Suffolk residents.

Donations may be given by check made out to the Cheer Fund and mailed to the Suffolk News-Herald, P.O. Box 1220, Suffolk, VA 23439 or delivered to the newspaper’s office at 130 S. Saratoga St.