Toys for Tots Program Kicks off Nov. 1 in Albany County
The Toys for Tots program in Albany County will kick off on Nov 1., with drop-off locations being set up around the city of Laramie.
The Marine Corps League Detachment 777, the primary sponsor of the event, partners with Interfaith-Good Samaritan, the University of Wyoming’s Student Athletes’ Advisory Council, Wyo Tech, The Eppson Center for Seniors and many Laramie businesses to gather the toys.
Timothy Brooks, Toys for Tots coordinator for Albany County, said families in need of toys for Christmas fill out an application at the Interfaith-Good Samaritan office on 710 E Garfield Street, #127.
Brooks said the collection will run until Dec. 8, at which point the Marine Corps will gather the toys and sort them at the Eppson Center. He said the sorting process takes a week, but on Dec 15, families should be able to come pick up their toys. The children who receive donations are all from Albany County.
“Last year we had over 600 kids and over 200 families,” Brooks said.
In addition to the drop-off locations, Brooks said there will be a collection at the UW home football game against Colorado State University on Nov. 4. UW football fans can bring a toy to the game to donate. Brooks said the UW Cowboys will gather the toys and also walk around Tailgate Park with donation jars to raise money for Toys for Tots.
Brooks says the drop-off locations can be viewed on the Toys for Tots website. Some locations will have a box where toys can be dropped off, while other businesses will use a donation jar where donors can give money to the organization. Brooks says donations should be toys appropriate for ages 0-13.
Brooks says Toys for Tots used to accept items for children up to age 15, but he said children of that age prefer other items such as clothes or phones, which are not toys and are not accepted under Toys for Tots rules.
Brooks said those who wish to volunteer will get the chance to do so.
“I can use additional volunteers,” Brooks said. “On the Toys for Tots website, you can come in and you can sign up as a volunteer, then I will contact them and tell them where I can use them.”