Good Question

Dec 19, 2012 8:49 PM by John Reger

GQ: How do you make sure toys from Season of Hope get to families in need?

The Central Coast has been outstanding in donating toys this holiday season. Our toy drive alone raised 4,000 toys. That raised this question: How do you make sure the toys from Your season of Hope campaign get to the actual families in need? Good Question.

The toys are handled by various charities like the Salvation Army, Lompoc Charities, Toys for Tots and Operation Santa Claus. The process starts with parents signing up in advance with one of the charities. They usually show a photo ID and a paycheck or something else to demonstrate they're low income. They also show a birth certificate or other proof of their child's age.

All the agencies with similar toy drives keep lists of this information and share them with each other so there's no overlap. Before Christmas, parents visit a charity location without their kids on a set date to choose the presents. They usually get 2 or 3 per child, including stocking stuffers, plus 1 book per family.

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