Toys for Tots in dire need of toys

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GLADSTONE , Mo. – With just a few days left before Christmas, Toys for Tots say they are in dire need of more toys for children, luckily an event Saturday was able to help with some of that need.

Every year a local civic organization, Odd Fellows, hosts a breakfast in November to raise toys and money for Toys for Tots, however this year they are doing the breakfast for a second time in one year because the need for toys is so dire.

“If the donations are down there are kids out there who are going to have an empty tree and we can't abide by that,” said Mike Walker with Odd Fellows.

Other chapters of the Odd Fellows have pitched in as well. Blue Springs Lodge 497 of the organization donated a $1,000 check to Toys for Tots which will buy about 100 toys, but even with that the need is still there. In fact, Toys for Tots has only met half its goal so far this year. As of Saturday, they were still down by more than 40,000 toys.

People from around the metro are also working hard to fill the ever-increasing need. One family took their three sons shopping for some of the most needed items on Toys for Tots’ list before attending the breakfast.

"Soccer balls, footballs, baseballs, baseball gloves and bats, anything they can take out and have fun with," said Ryan Hicks, of the Odd Fellows, of the needed toys.

Saturday effort brought in hundreds of dollars and dozens more toys, all from a small group of people that believes it is better to give than receive.

“We like to get together and support our communities and take care of people in need,” Hicks said about the Odd Fellows.

Toys for Tots donation boxes have already been picked up at most drop off locations, but if you would like to help Toys for Tots you can take toys directly to the warehouse at 3801 E. 155th Street, or you can donate through their website. They are mostly in need of toys for eight to ten year olds. Please make donations before December 17.

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