October 1, 2020 marks the official kick-off for the Toys for Tots 2020 holiday campaign running through Christmas. U.S. Marines and volunteers will be conducting 810 local toy collection and distribution campaigns in all 50 states, DC, Puerto Rico, Guam, and U.S. Virgin Islands.
Who: U.S. Marines and 35,000+ volunteers, millions of local supporters, hundreds of corporate partners of Toys for Tots
What: Marines and volunteers engaging with local businesses, media and individuals within their communities collecting new, unwrapped toys and distributing those gifts to less fortunate children allowing them to experience the joy of Christmas
When: October 1, 2020 – December 25, 2020
Where: Toys for Tots is conducting 810 local campaigns in communities throughout the U.S. Find a local TFT campaign near you by visiting our website at www.toysfortots.org
Why: There is an estimated 15 million children living in poverty. The mission of Marine Toys for Tots is to bring the joy of Christmas to less fortunate children with the goal of delivering a message of hope that will inspire youngsters to grow into responsible, productive, patriotic citizens. The objectives include having a positive impact on the development of children, creating or restoring self-esteem, and bringing all elements of communities together in a common cause for three months each year.
Opportunity: Interviews with Marines conducting Toys for Tots campaigns…
Interviews with Marine Toys for Tots Foundation Leadership…
Visuals of U.S. Marines collecting, sorting, and distributing toys…
Contact: Ted Silvester, Colonel USMC (Ret)
Vice President Marketing & Development
Marine Toys for Tots Foundation
Multi-Media Assets: https://digitalmedia.vnr1.com/2019/05/08/toysfortots-2019/
Toys for Tots Response During the COVID Pandemic
The coronavirus pandemic shuttered countless businesses, forced families to remain isolated in their homes and resulted in millions of families finding themselves out of work – without income – and in dire need of support. While Toys for Tots is our Nation’s flagship children’s Christmas charity, we did not want to wait until the holiday season to provide support. Marines are known for being the first to fight and running to the sound of battle. During this COVID-19 crisis, Toys for Tots wanted to do our part to answer our nation’s call to action.
So, in an effort to provide immediate relief and assistance, Toys for Tots partnered with Good360 who helped us distribute two million toys, games, and books to families-in-need in the spring and early summer.
The Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program collects and distributes an average of 18 million toys to 7 million less fortunate children each year during the holiday season (Nov & Dec) through a very active and robust distribution network in over 800 local communities in all 50 states. Outside of the holidays, however, Toys for Tots does not have its distribution network available – our Marines are busy training, deploying, and answering our nation’s military call. What we did have, was a large inventory of new toys, games and books donated to us by our generous partners. Normally, this inventory would be distributed to children-in-need during the upcoming holiday season, but given the current crisis, we decided to distribute these toys with the help of Good360 to communities throughout the U.S. to families with children in need during the pandemic.
Toys, books, and games offer many benefits during this extraordinary time of need. They help to fight boredom, relieve anxiety in children, facilitate a return to normalcy, and can even contribute to the educational development of our nation’s children, especially while they are out of school.
The ability of Toys for Tots to assist families in their time of need, outside of the holiday season, was made possible by our generous partners. These toys, games and books were donated to Toys for Tots by our National Corporate Sponsors.
The two million toys distributed helped to relieve anxiety in children, brought some relief and a return to normalcy in the home. Some of the positive impact can be viewed at https://www.toysfortots.org/news/news.aspx, but this distribution came at a price. The two million toys were to be used to augment local toy collection and distribution drives for the upcoming holiday season.
To compound an already 2-million toy deficit, we anticipate local toy collections will be negatively impacted during the holiday season due to the pandemic producing far fewer donated toys. We also anticipate a significant increase in families with children seeking assistance from Toys for Tots.
Toys for Tots is now working diligently with help from its supporters to “refill Santa’s bag of toys” to be able to answer the request of ALL families with children seeking our support during the holiday period. Help Toys for Tots fulfill the Christmas Holiday dreams of millions of less fortunate children who otherwise may be forgotten, after all – every child deserves a little Christmas.
About Marine Toys for Tots
Toys for Tots, a 73-year national charitable program run by the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, provides happiness and hope to less fortunate children during each Christmas holiday season. The toys, books and other gifts collected and distributed by the Marines offer these children recognition, confidence, and a positive memory for a lifetime. It is such experiences that help children become responsible citizens and caring members of their community. Last year the Marine Toys for Tots Program fulfilled the holiday hopes and dreams of 7 million less fortunate children in over 800 communities nationwide. Since 1947 over 265 million children have been assisted. The Marine Toys for Tots Foundation is a not-for-profit organization authorized by the U.S. Marine Corps and the Department of Defense to provide fundraising and other necessary support for the annual Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program. For more information, visit www.toysfortots.org.