From: Don Anderson
Winona Area Toys for Kids
Thanks to your support and dedication, Winona Area Toys for Kids had another very successful year. Three hundred and fifty three families with 1,227 children received toys, making their holiday a bit happier. This year, we began expansion efforts into the Fountain City area. Over all, we had 113 collection barrels located at 102 different locations from October 30 until December 9.
While we have almost come to expect unbelievable support from our community, it gets better each year. This year we received even more help from Winona Radio, Winona Daily News and the Winona Post than ever before. For the first time we had businesses volunteer to hold events open to the public that offered free services in exchange for a toy donation. We also had organizations which in the past supported our efforts but decided this year to step it up a notch, such as St. Anne’s did by challenging each department to see who could donate the most toys. This out pouring of support was on top of the extremely generous support of residents in filling the collection barrels with toys almost as fast as we could collect them.
Again this year Toys for Kids received significant grants from local businesses that along with the very generous financial support from many other organizations and residents in the area were used to purchase $8,500 worth of toys for distribution. This was in addition to the generous donations of toys from area toy stores.
On top of all this, we had an outstanding number of new volunteers who came forward to help provide the labor needed to prep the collection barrels, deliver, monitor, transport collected toys, retrieve collection barrels, sort toys and man the distribution of toys at the Toy Store. For example, in previous years we had five or six people to deliver and monitor the collections barrels; this year we had 20.
Winona, please give yourself a big hand – you are truly one of a kind!