The student news site of Smithson Valley High School in Spring Branch, Texas

Valley Ventana

The student news site of Smithson Valley High School in Spring Branch, Texas

Valley Ventana

The student news site of Smithson Valley High School in Spring Branch, Texas

Valley Ventana

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Toys for Tots drive extended to Dec. 13

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Toys are being collected by NJROTC for their annual Toys for Tots drive.

The Toys for Tots drive, hosted by the Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps has been extended to Dec. 13. 

“We’re gonna push it to the bitter end,” Commander Scott Outlaw said. “We’ll be wrapping it up (on the 13th) because we need to get (all the toys) collected and delivered to the distribution center.”

With the addition of an Amazon wish list this year, turnout for the drive has been more successful than in previous years, so to get as many donations as possible, the deadline has been extended.

“It’s been a lot better since we have the QR code,” senior Nia Hoppstaedter said. “It’s easier to access for people, so we’ve gotten a lot more donations than usual.”

The NJROTC program recognizes that there are many organizations to donate to, but has been trying to get the word out about Toys for Tots.

“We just always feel like the word could be spread even more,” Outlaw said. “But to be realistic, there’s a lot of organizations asking people to donate and we understand that you can’t do them all.”

Although Toys for Tots is a national organization, toys will generally stay within the community they are donated in. After the 13th, the toys will be moved to the San Antonio distribution center and will be given to children in the community.

Since donations are accepted through Amazon this year, orders need to be placed before the deadline to allow shipping time. 

“School lets out for us on the 15th so we need a day to kind of get it over (to the distribution center),” Outlaw said. “We’d like to get them all in by the 13th.”

Outlaw also stresses how important fundraisers like Toys for Tots are in developing students into leaders and productive members of society. 

“We are specifically, in JROTC, what’s called a citizenship development program,” he said.  “We’re striving to make all of our young cadets better citizens in a lot of ways. We use (Toys for Tots) as our channel to try and get some toys to children in need in our community.”

There are donation bins located in senior dining and by the library. There is also an Amazon wishlist where toys can be shipped directly to the school.

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