The Saline Area Fire Department has launched its annual Toys for Tots program to make sure about 150 under-privileged children will have gifts this Christmas.
Fire Chief Craig Hoeft hopes the Toys for Tots drive will provide three toys for each of the kids.
“No child should wake up on Christmas without presents,” Hoeft said.
Each year, Saline Area Social Service, which serves families in the Saline Area Schools district, provides a list that tells Hoeft how many children to collect for. The list is divided by age group and sex.
“A lot of times, people buy toys for the really young kids, but we like people to remember some of the older kids as well,” Hoeft said.
Hoeft said the campaign has enjoyed great support every year.
“Every year I get a little bit nervous because there are so many other great programs in the community. But every year, the community comes through for us,” Hoeft said. “People understand that the donations go to kids in this community.”
After the gifts are collected firefighters transport them by fire engine to the Saline Area Social Service office on West Michigan Avenue, where parents come in to pick up gifts for their children.
Gifts can be dropped off at the fire department right up until Christmas Eve.
“We’ll make sure they get to the right place,” Hoeft said.
There are several ways to support the annual program.
- Drop off new unwrapped toys at the Saline Area Fire Department, 205 E. Michigan Ave.
- Send your child to any Saline Area School with a new unwrapped toy. There is a Toys for Tots box at each school.