Toys for Tots brings cheer to Mesquite Kids

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Mesquite resident Gina Benell carefully chooses the toys she thinks will make her children smile the brightest on Christmas morning during the distribution of the Toys for Tots drive which was held on Dec. 18 at the old Boxing Club.   Elf helper, Roberta Franco, shows Benell a very nice hand-made and donated afghan which might be just perfect for any little girl’s room.  Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Mesquite resident Gina Benell carefully chooses the toys she thinks will make her children smile the brightest on Christmas morning during the distribution of the Toys for Tots drive which was held on Dec. 18 at the old Boxing Club. Elf helper, Roberta Franco, shows Benell a very nice hand-made and donated afghan which might be just perfect for any little girl’s room. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

The U. S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program works directly with Mesquite’s Salvation Army office to distribute toys, books and clothing articles to less fortunate families in Mesquite. The only qualification for the Toys for Tots program in Mesquite is that you have a valid Nevada I.D.

Many of the businesses and community members collect donations and make cash donations to purchase additional toys. The Toy for Tots Coordinator works closely with Mesquite Salvation Army Director Roberta Franco to make sure that the children of Mesquite are well taken care of even if the Mesquite community has a difficult year collecting donations.

Franco said, “The coordinator I work with is absolutely wonderful. She has and will load up a truck full of goodies and ship it up here for the kids just to make sure we have enough to make Christmas really special for them.”

This year’s Toys for Tots program took care of 100 families and 234 individual children who live in Mesquite alone; these numbers do not include the outstanding areas.

Toys for Tots is a 501c3 non-profit charity which maintains that 97 percent of the money donated to the organization goes directly to buying toys for the kids. The other 3 percent covers fundraising materials for the drive such as posters and boxes. Not one member of the group collects a salary for their charitable work.

Salvation Army volunteers sorted and organized a great many toys for the Toys for Tots distribution on Dec. 18.  The coats in the middle of the gymnasium floor were collected as part of the Coats for Kids Program and donated to the Toys for Tots by Joe Aquino, Local Volunteer Coordinator for the Coats for Kids Program.  Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Salvation Army volunteers sorted and organized a great many toys for the Toys for Tots distribution on Dec. 18. The coats in the middle of the gymnasium floor were collected as part of the Coats for Kids Program and donated to the Toys for Tots by Joe Aquino, Local Volunteer Coordinator for the Coats for Kids Program. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

For more information on Toys for Tots and how you can donate or become a volunteer visit your local Salvation Army Office located at 355 West Mesquite Blvd. or contact them at 702-345-5116.

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