(Posted Nov. 19, 2020)
Want to bring cheer to families in need this holiday season? Check out these opportunities to donate toys and more around Madison County.
Madison County Job & Family Services and London Fire Department
The Holiday Helpers Firefighters Toy Drive is under way. Madison County families in need, with children ages 0-12 years old, who want to receive gifts are encouraged to sign up as soon as possible. Job & Family Services, 200 Midway St., London, is closed to the public, but application forms can be picked up in the metal container located in the parking lot near the front doors. Completed forms can be returned to the drop box at the building. For details, call (740) 852-4770.
For details about “adopting” children for which to buy gifts, making a monetary donation, or donating toys, call 852-4770.
American Legion Auxiliary
London American Legion Auxiliary Unit 105 is collecting toys as part of the Holiday Helpers Firefighters Toy Drive. Drive through and drop off toys or monetary donations between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Dec. 5 at the Legion Post, 51 E. First St., London.
West Jefferson Schools, Fire Department and Library
The firefighters of Jefferson Township, Hurt-Battelle Memorial Library, and West Jefferson High School’s student council are coordinating their annual Christmas toy drive for underprivileged children of the West Jefferson area.
The group is collecting toys for children ages newborn through 9 years old, and gift cards for children ages 10 to 16 years old.
Toy donations can be dropped off at: Jefferson Township Fire Department, 745 W. Main St.; Hurt-Battelle Memorial Library, 270 Lilly Chapel Rd.; or West Jefferson High School, 1 Roughrider Dr. If necessary, arrangements can be made for pickup of donations by contacting one of the organizers listed below. Reference “Toy Drive” in the subject area of any email correspondence.
For monetary donations, make checks payable to “Firefighters Toy Drive” and mail them to or drop them off at the high school or fire department. Shopping for the toys will be done on Dec. 12.
For additional info, contact: Richard Cook, Jefferson Township Fire Department, firstname.lastname@example.org, (614) 879-8265 (work) or (614) 296-3510 (cell); Jen Miller, West Jefferson High School, email@example.com, (614) 879-7681, ext. 2300, (614) 394-2792; Melissa Woodard, Hurt-Battelle Memorial Library, firstname.lastname@example.org or (614) 879-8448.
Tri-County Joint Fire District in Mount Sterling
It is time to fill out applications for the Tri-County Joint Fire-Fighter’s Toy drive. Those that fill out applications to receive toys must provide an ID and proof of residence, such as electric bill or phone bill. Applicants must reside within Tri-County Fire’s running district. The application period runs through Dec. 4. Forms can be picked up at the fire house, 7 W. Columbus St., Mount Sterling, during normal business hours: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Toy and monetary donations will be accepted up until Dec. 4. Organizers plan to shop a little earlier this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The toy drive benefits children ages 0 to 12 years old.
For more information, call the fire house at (740) 869-2643.
Plain City Churches
For its annual Christmas Basket project, the Plain City Church Fellowship is asking for names, addresses and phone numbers of families or individuals in the Jonathan Alder School District who might need assistance over the holidays. Names can be turned in by calling Plain City Presbyterian Church at (614) 873-5011 or Dave McCray at (614) 408-1617 as soon as possible. All information is kept confidential.
Due to COVID-19, organizers are not accepting food donations and will not hold a packing day. Anyone interested in helping with the project can donate money. Checks made out to “Christmas Basket Fund” can be mailed to: Plain City Presbyterian Church, 231 E. Main St., Plain City, OH 43064.
Another way to participate is to “adopt” a family and buy their Christmas presents. Families may be adopted through local churches or by calling the Presbyterian Church or McCray. Guidelines will be provided for purchasing gifts for appropriate age levels. Organizers ask those who adopt families to deliver the gifts between Dec. 14 and Dec. 21.
For more information, contact Jim Kaufman, co-chairman, at (937) 243-1653.
West Jefferson Community Association Adopt-a-Family
The association is collecting gifts for children up to high school age who live in West Jefferson and/or are enrolled in Jefferson Local Schools.
Participants are invited to donate new, unwrapped gifts or money for the Community Association to purchase gifts. Monetary donations should be made out to “West Jefferson Community Association Adopt-a-Family” and mailed to the attention of Vickie Edwards at P.O. Box 142, West Jefferson, OH 43162. Edwards and Dee Jones are coordinating this year’s collection.
Another way to help is by “adopting” families for which to buy gifts. Tags that list the clothing sizes and toy wishes of area children decorate trees at West Jefferson Hardware, Hurt-Battelle Memorial Library and VFW Post 7005. Participants take a tag and fulfill the wishes listed on it, then return the gifts to the place they picked up the tag by the date listed on the tag.
Unwrapped gifts also can be dropped off at Bambino’s Pizza.
For more information about donating toys, adopting families, or referring families, call Edwards at (614) 582-1328. Area families in need can call Edwards for an application or pick up a form at the library. Applications will be cross-checked with other non-profit organizations and Madison County Job and Family Services to prevent duplication.