Toy drives are in full swing around the county

Messenger photo by Kristy Zurbrick
Tri-County Joint Fire District and the Mount Sterling Community Center are accepting donations of toys for their annual Christmas toy drive: (from left) firefighter Todd Phillips, Lt. Zach Graham, and firefighter Joe Feasel.

(Posted Nov. 15, 2023)

Several toy/gift drives are in full swing around the county.

Mount Sterling
The Tri-County Joint Fire District firefighters, in conjunction with the Mount Sterling Community Center, are gearing up for this year’s Christmas toy drive.

Families who would like to receive toys are asked to fill out an application and provide identification and proof of residence (electric bill, phone bill, etc.). Applicants must reside within the Tri-County Fire district or within the community center’s service area. Application forms are available at the fire house and at the community center Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Applications are due by Dec. 8. The fire district and community center are accepting toys and monetary donations through Dec. 8. For more information, call the fire house at (740) 869-2643 or the community center at (740) 869-2453.

Plain City
Plain City area churches are making plans for the annual Christmas Basket project. In 2022, baskets and gifts were distributed to 105 families which included over 750 individuals, approximately 500 of whom were children.

Participating churches are accepting donations to help fund gift purchases and gift cards for food this year. No food donations are accepted. To make a donation, make a check payable to “Christmas Basket Fund” and mail it 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 at (614) 873-5011 or co-chairman Jim Kaufman, (937) 243-1653.

Guidelines are provided for purchasing gifts for appropriate age levels. Anyone who adopts a family is asked to deliver the gifts between Dec. 9 and Dec. 16.

For more information about the Plain City Church Fellowship Christmas Basket Drive, contact a local church or Jim Kaufman.

Madison County Job & Family Services and London Fire Department
Madison County Job & Family Services and the London Fire & EMS Department have teamed up again for the Holiday Helpers toy drive.

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. Families can sign up at Job & Family Services, 200 Midway St., London, through Dec. 20. For details, call (740) 852-4770. Anyone who would like to “adopt” children for which to buy gifts, make a monetary donation, or donate toys can call 852-4770.

Last year, the toy drive provided 289 families with Christmas gifts for their children. A total of 581 children from around the county received gifts.

West Jefferson Schools, Fire Department, and Library
The Jefferson Township firefighters, 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. 18.

For additional info, contact: Kory Saddler, Jefferson Township Fire Department, (614) 879-8265; Jen Miller, West Jefferson High School,, (614) 879-7681, ext. 2300, (614) 394-2792; Chris Siscoe, Hurt-Battelle Memorial Library,, (614) 879-8448.

West Jefferson Community Association Adopt-a-Family
Each year, the association collects gifts to give to children in need who live in the Jefferson Local School District. Families in need who would like to receive gifts can pick up applications at Norwood Elementary and Hurt-Battelle Memorial Library.

Anyone who would like to donate to the effort can do so by “adopting” a family and purchasing gifts for them. Another way to help is by making a monetary donation. For details, contact Dee Jones at (614) 746-7648 or by email at

H.E.L.P. House
The H.E.L.P. House will hold their annual Christmas outreach for children and teens Dec. 16, 9 a.m.-noon. Parents and guardians can register to “shop” for toys, gifts, and clothing by calling the H.E.L.P. House at (740) 852-1980.

Volunteers are needed on Dec. 13-14, 6-8:30 p.m., to help set up and prepare for the outreach.

For more information, send email to or call (740) 852-1980.

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