The unparalleled generosity of Moose Javians was on full display at Canadian Tire as the 8th annual Toy Days in support of the Salvation Army brought in a record number of donations.
Over the three-day toy drive, 432 toys and $551 were donated, ensuring that everyone in Moose Jaw has a Merry Christmas.
"It's exciting to know that we can make a dream of some child, this Christmas, become a reality," said Lt. Lester Ward, the Pastor and Director of Community and Family Services for the Salvation Army Moose Jaw.
"Last year we brought in at the Canadian Tire for Toy Days 404 [toys] plus some monetary donations. This year we have come in at 432 which is as of [Saturday]. We know there are still some toys that will trickle in, but as of today 432 and it's very exciting to know we exceeded last year," added Lt. Ward.
Now that Toy Days has come to an end, the toys will be set up in the Salvation Army Church.
“The toy shop allows the [parent or guardian] to come and select the toy from the shop at no cost. It’s been donated by the generosity of the folks of Moose Jaw, of course... But because it’s Santa's shop, and the elves are at work, we prefer the mom or dad to come alone, because it’s a busy spot, and we want to make sure that the elves and Santa can get things ready for [the kids],” said Lt. Ward.
Ross and Audrey Leckie, Moose Jaw Canadian Tire owners, say supporting Toy Days is an easy decision for them.
"It's really nice that the Salvation Army does this for the kids in the community. Because it really helps them out and it's always nice for some kids to get toys during the Christmas season. So we like to help out any way we can so it was easy for us," said Ross Leckie noting that supporting the community is a core value of the Leckies.
For those that missed Toy Days, the Salvation Army is still accepting donations at the Salvation Army Thrift Store, 175 1st Ave Northeast, during business hours and at eight Salvation Army Kettle locations across the city.
"We have a couple of events that are going to continue to take place between now and Christmas Day. We have the Moose Jaw Warriors' toque, mitten and teddy bear toss next Friday night (December 9), against the Calgary Hitmen here in Moose Jaw, which were excited and looking forward to a large crowd," noted Lt. Ward.
Anyone interested in volunteering with the Salvation Amy Kettle campaign can connect with the Salvation Army offices downtown at 306-692-5899.
The 8th annual 800 CHAB, Country 100 and MIX 103 Toy Days in support of the Salvation Army was presented by Canadian Tire Moose Jaw and sponsored by Xplore.
- with files from Ryan Vincent.