Faculty members at Midland University recently pitched in to make the holiday season a little bit brighter for children at Care Corps in Fremont.
The faculty members came together to give kids at Care Corps, which provides housing opportunities for those in need, some holiday cheer by way of the most quintessential Christmas gifts for kids, toys.
The toy drive was spearheaded by Professor Connie Taylor and other members of the school’s Faculty Senate. All in all the group donated 42 toys for children from toddlers to teenagers.
The idea for those toy drive came to Taylor while she was shopping earlier this year.
“My husband and I were just shopping at Costco and were walking along and my husband saw this toy, and he said ‘That is incredible, I would have loved that as a child,” she said. “So I said let’s get it.”
While perusing the aisles, Taylor saw four costumes that she thought would be great for children although she didn’t have any young children to give them to at the time.
“Our son is 24, so we didn’t have anyone to give it to,” she said. “But I’ve joked with people that most people buy a toy for a cause and what I had to do was find a cause for this toy.”
That simple gesture led to the toy drive that provided a variety of toys for the children including Nerf footballs, a door mounted basketball hoop, board games including Yahtzee, Sorry, and Chutes and Ladders as well as the Defenders & Heroes multi-adventure uniform set that Taylor had first seen while shopping.
The toy drive began shortly after Thanksgiving, faculty members brought in the new, unwrapped toys for the children through December 13th.
“I pitched the idea to the Faculty Senate to see if it would be something that they would be interested in sponsoring, and the other members were very supportive,” Taylor said. “My vice chair Molly Zimmer was also very helpful in schlepping the toys up to my office and getting them where they needed to be.”
Following her pitch to her fellow Faculty Senate members, Taylor and the other faculty members needed to find an organization to donate the toys to, because they wanted to help kids locally.
“Brenda Wilberding was the one who connected us to Care Corps,” Taylor said. “We really wanted these toys to go locally to a local organization and she connected us with Care Corps and said they had a lot of families there and we were trying to make a lot of children’s Christmas’s a little bit brighter.”
While the Midland toy drive provided children with toys that brighten their holiday season, Care Corps has also been receiving an assortment of donations from the public that benefit residents in a variety of ways.
The agency is currently holding their 25 Days of Christmas Campaign that runs through the rest of this week leading up to Christmas.
According to Morgan Bridgman-Putnam, director of development and public relations for Care Corps, items in high demand that Bridgman said the public could consider donating include: Deodorant, paper towels, liquid laundry detergent, liquid body wash, ranch dressing, ground beef, potatoes, sugar, flour, flip flops, bleach, all-purpose cleaner, hand soap, razors, shaving cream, towels, over-the-counter medicine, powdered milk, antibacterial wipes, coffee, zippy bags, aluminum foil, chicken packages, plastic gloves and pillows.
All donated items can be dropped off directly at Care Corps, 723 N. Broad St.
Every little bit of generosity from the public makes a difference, Bridgman said.
“Care Corps is about meeting basic needs, we don’t want families living on the streets and this is an essential service in our community, to make sure that people and families are cared for and have their basic needs met.”