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These toy drives, giveaways hope to be 'the gift that keeps on giving' for families

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Posted at 7:42 PM, Dec 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-04 19:42:28-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- It's the season of giving as dozens of community members donated toys for families in need on Saturday.

Over in Chester, children and their families got the chance to pick out their own toys for Christmas at the Chester Village Famers Market.

“I know a couple of free toys might not make everybody’s Christmas, but that’s something that you have something underneath your tree," Lacie Hester, who helped organized the giveaway, explained.

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Hester collected donations for two weeks with the help of vendors to gibe back and make sure kids have toys.

“Everything that got donated, we sanitized, we wiped down," Hester explained. “So we’re trying to keep it as COVID safe as possible.”

Alex Artis brought the children she babysits to the giveaway for an early Christmas present.

“I wanted to give them the chance to get some more toys," Artis said. “The times that they see me, they're always so happy. So to just see them in their natural element being happy, it was nice."

Lacie Hester
Lacie Hester

About 10 percent of Virginians live in poverty, according to the U.S Census Bureau.

Hester said their goal is to help those less fortunate in Central Virginia.

"We had people at 8:45 a.m. coming to get toys, because without that they wouldn’t have anything under their tree," Hester said.

Anissa Turner-Randolph
Anissa Turner-Randolph

Over in South Richmond, Miss Community Clovia hosted her 18th annual toy drive with Radio One, while partnering with Walmart and area law enforcement.

The collection hopes to help over 700 families in Richmond.

"There's been so much trauma in our streets, so we at least want this season to to be the gift that keeps on giving," Anissa Turner-Randolph said.

Both organizers agree that it is about giving back.

Clovia and Radio One will be again accepting donations Sunday, Dec. 5 from from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Forrest Hill Walmart at 2410 Sheila Lane in Richmond.

Hester said she hopes to have one last toy giveaway at the Chester Village Farmers Market on Saturday, Dec. 11. Those wishing to donate can email her at lacielovehester@gmail.com

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