For those of you who celebrate Christmas, heads up… it’s in two weeks! That’s why today’s Feel Good Friday organization is Toys for Tots.this link.
It began in 1947 as the brainchild of Diane Hendricks. When her Marine Corps husband couldn’t find an appropriate charity where he could donate dolls she had made, she told him to start one. That year, Maj Hendricks and the Marines in his reserve unit in Los Angeles collected and distributed 5,000 toys! The program was so successful, the Marines made it a national community action program in 1948.
To handle the growing demand, the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation was established in 1991 to help run and support the program. The Foundation raises funds, purchases toys, provides promotional and support materials, manages all funds raised and donated, solicits corporate support, educates the public, and handles day-to-day operations for nearly 800 local TFT Coordinators and a network of 40,000 volunteers. On an annual basis, TFT distributes an average of 18 million toys to 7 million children – 584 million toys to date!
Every toy tells a story, from the young men who received toys when they were tots and have now grown up and enlisted in the Marine Corps to the mother whose participation in the program put her on a path that led to a getting a job and buying a house. You can read about their stories and many more here.
If you want to help out Toys for Tots, you can get involved with your local campaign, donate cash or use the virtual toybox feature to donate a toy. You can also spread the word on social media by liking their Facebook page and following them on Twitter @ToysForTots_USA
Bonus fun fact for reading the entire blog: the miniature three-car train logo was designed in 1947 by Walt Disney!