The holiday spirit is thriving in Weyburn following the conclusion of the Fire Brigade's annual toy drive in benefit of the Family Place. After setting the bar high by aiming to fill two fire trucks with toy donations for families in need, Rob Jack was touched by how far the team's expectations were exceeded.
"Today was huge. It was very uplifting to see all this generosity and it has all of us in a very good mood to see everybody come together and give to those who might not have enough this Christmas."
After spending five hours at their Walmart and Peavey Mart collection sites, the Fire Brigade managed to double their goal and collected enough toys to fill each fire truck twice. Additionally, $800 in cash donations were given to The Family Place to further help families in need. Bryden Hnatiuk, one of the Career Firefighters for the Department, joked that they may need a scale to determine which crew made the biggest delivery.
"Really though, this is just a slice of how generous people in Weyburn are, especially this time of year when you tell them it's for the kids, it's really an easy ask. Everyone goes inside and they come up with an armful of toys. So, it's just kind of a reminder of how everyone steps up this time of year."
Once the final donations were collected, the teams found their way to The Family Place to make their delivery. A mountain of toys had to be held back as the doors opened, threatening to cause an avalanche that could bury half the crew. An assembly line quickly formed, with each volunteer carrying more than their arms could hold. Soon, the entire floor space of the main office was completely strewn with an incredible variety of presents. Judy Lumb, Assistant Executive Director for the Family Place, was equally touched to see the collection carpeting the room in front of her.
"This is just amazing! I'm feeling really emotional just thinking about how wonderful this is. We are going to be able to help so many families this Christmas."
Once the final sorting is completed, staff at The Family Place will be able to start the process of distributing the donations to families visiting their facility. Lumb explained that they get to know the families who visit quite well and will generally approach those who may be in need, offering the opportunity to browse through the donations and select some toys for each of their children to have on Christmas. Lumb extends her sincere thanks to the community on behalf of The Family Place, adding that it might take a few days before they can see their Christmas tree again.
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