Toys for Tots wraps up early following Dufferin’s move to “Red” zone

December 23, 2020   ·   0 Comments

By Sam Odrowski

Dufferin OPP wasn’t out collecting donations at Walmart this past weekend, as the Toys for Tots campaign closed early due to the region entering the “Red” zone for COVID-19 restrictions last Monday (Dec. 14).

“I think it’s just the wisest decision to make right now, to restrict our involvement in the community in that regard,” said Dufferin OPP Sgt. Paul Beaton.

“But you know, in talking with the Salvation Army, they are very pleased with the results thus far with the Toys for Tots campaign. As a matter of fact, I think they’re far ahead of what they thought they would have been at,” he added.

“That just speaks to the generosity of the community and the willingness of the community to give back to their neighbours.”

Over the course of the first three weekends, the OPP generated a significant amount of donations for the local Salvation Army, filling their 16 foot enclosed trailer at least four times, according to Beaton.

He said he’s grateful to know those donations will be helping anywhere from 250 to 300 families in need this Christmas.

“I think this was a great success and I’m really looking forward to getting into 2021 and doing this again,” Beaton enthused.

“We’re really impressed with how our neighbours treat one another and I would say, you know, please just do what you can to support your neighbours and those that are in need.”

Beaton noted that one of the messages the OPP really want to focus on with the public is that even though the campaign closed early, it’s important that people still donate.

“We’re just going to encourage everybody, if they find what they can in their pockets and donate to a charity of their choice, which will benefit the community,” Beaton said.

If the public would like to donate to Toys for Tots, they can still drop off donations at 390 C Line until Christmas or visit the Salvation Army at 690 Riddell Rd.

“We will graciously accept anything and we would just forward that all to the Salvation Army,” said Beaton.

He told the Citizen he’s amazed with the work by Salvation Army volunteers to support less fortunate individuals in Orangeville.

“They have an army of volunteers there that have been working nonstop, you know, 16 hour days to make this happen,” said Beaton.

“It takes a strong core of volunteers to come forward… sorting toys and packaging them so they can reduce the contact, and what else can you say to that other than it’s amazing what people are doing to help one another.”

Beaton said he’s thrilled with the success of this year’s campaign, considering it was the first year the OPP took over the longstanding tradition of Toys for Tots from the Orangeville Police Service.

“It was a well rounded success, I’m very happy with how the public came out with their support and I hope to see everyone again in 2021,” he lauded.

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