For struggling families, every day presents new challenges in providing for their children’s most basic needs such as food, shelter and healthcare. Keeping growing kids clothed is another challenge these families face on budgets already stretched to the breaking point. What parent wants their child to feel lacking?
This concern is heightened during the holidays. This joyful time of gift-giving and receiving creates tremendous anxiety for parents who simply cannot afford these kinds of “extras” for their children. They fear their children’s disappointment if they cannot provide them with presents of games and toys like their classmates will receive.
Holiday Toy Shoppe, sponsored each year by Tempe Community Action Agency (TCAA) offers families in need a “store” where they can choose donated gifts for their children. This year, TCAA anticipates the Toy Shoppe will serve families representing 500 area children on December 18 and 19. One such family involved in TCAA’s Health Start program was grief-stricken at the loss of their 12-year-old. Emotionally and financially overwhelmed, they received rent and utility assistance and were enrolled into the Toy Shoppe program so they could get gifts for their other children ages 5, 10 and 16. This family felt that in their moment of need they had a community come together and help them through this most difficult time in their lives.
You can help bring joy to the holiday season for financially overwhelmed families:
- Order gift donations online: Visit com — https://amzn.com/w/1EJ54T3053W35 to access the TCAA Holiday Toy Shoppe wish list. Items purchased from the Wish List will ship directly to TCAA.
- Donate items in-kind: new, unwrapped toys for children ages 0-12 (please no plush toys). Visit tempeaction.org/toy-shoppe-wishlist/ for ideas.
- Host a Toy Drive: TCAA has signs and collection boxes available to promote your drive.
Toy donations can be dropped off through December 16 at:
Escalante Senior Center
2150 E. Orange Street, Tempe
Contact TCAA at 480-350-5884 to arrange a pick-up time.
- Volunteer: Help set up and staff the Holiday Toy Shoppe. Volunteers are needed in the days leading up to and during the December 18 and 19 events, which run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.