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Marine Corps holds annual fundraiser during holiday season

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by SAMANTHA MALHER
Staff Writer

The United States Marine Corps Reserve is currently holding their annual Toys for Tots fundraiser that benefits kids throughout the United States of America including the District of Colombia as well as Puerto Rico.

Toys for Tots collects new and unwrapped toys every year during Oct., Nov., and Dec., These toys are delivered to less fortunate children during the Christmas holiday in participating communities.

The Marine Corps wish to give toys to every child in need. Every child that needs a toy and is signed up with Toys for Tots will receive one. This mission is strongly funded through the donation of toys to the organization.

“Last year there were only 22,000 kids helped, but there’s a total of roughly 50,000 kids in the Corpus area that are eligible for Toys for Tots,” said Sgt. Sammarcelli, who is in charge of the gathering, handling, and shipping of the toys. “Donations would be helpful.”

The U.S. Marine Corps Reserve has strict regulations that they require all donors and volunteers to follow. Though it might be challenging for those wishing to help these methods have proven successful with the growing number of kids helped by Toys for Tots.

“I’m so used to just being able to help anyway I can and do what I need to do to get things done,” said Lyn Srinual, who is a senior communications major. “There’s so much that we’re not allowed to do that only the Marines can do and it can make you feel a little frustrated. I had no idea we were limited to doing specific things. But all things help!”

No matter how small the contribution may be all of the hard work leads up to a memorable Christmas for a child in need. Donors and volunteers alike can feel confident that their work is going towards a great cause that benefits their surrounding community.

“Everything that doesn’t get donated on Toys for Tots gets distributed back into the community,” said Sgt. Sammarcelli. “Same with all of the money that gets donated. It stays in Corpus. We use that money to buy toys for kids in the Corpus area.”

In addition, those interested in volunteering for Toys for Tots are strongly encouraged to do so. Those who volunteer for Toys for Tots are sure to not only gain volunteer hours but also feel a sense of accomplishment after giving less fortunate children a memorable Christmas.

“It’s hard to say [what I’ve enjoyed most] because we’re so early in the process,” said Srinual. “We haven’t seen the effect it has on the children and their families yet. But I think the anticipation leading up to it is extremely exciting.”

The goal of Toys for Tots is to deliver not only a new toy at Christmas but a message of hope as well. The U.S. Marine Corps Reserve hopes this will assist the children in becoming responsible, productive, patriotic citizens.

“It makes me feel really good about being a part of it,” said Sgt. Sammarcelli. “My little brother got toys from Toys for Tots when I was growing up, so I guess it’s kind of cool to be a part of it now giving back.”

For more information on Toys for Tots and how to volunteer, donate, or receive toys, please visit www.toysfortots.org or email toysfortotscctx@gmail.com.

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