By Tracy Haggerty
As a community, we can celebrate knowing that we are the cause of a happy holiday season for families throughout Cape Girardeau. Another successful Toybox drive is complete. Children are smiling remembering their visits from Santa, and parents rest easy knowing they can share in the joy of the season with toys for Christmas morning.
I am overwhelmed by the generosity of the citizens of Cape Girardeau and the surrounding area. This year we were able to donate toys to more than 400 families and serve more than 1,300 children. We are truly blessed with caring and compassionate individuals who give so generously to others in need. Thank you for your continued support for the Toybox project.
A special thank you to Mark Rademaker for donating the use of a warehouse facility to run our operation during December. Thank you to all the area businesses that allowed us to place collection boxes. Without that support we would not have the accessibility to the public to bring in toys and gifts. Thank you to the Southeast Missourian, which co-sponsors this event with the Jaycees, for getting word out to the community of our needs to implement the Toybox successfully.
I wish to give special recognition to Howard Kinder. Mr. Kinder has completed the delivery routing for the Toybox project for nearly 25 years. This is a tedious and difficult task that he handles graciously. Thank you to Bluff City Beer Co., River Eagle Distributing Co., Domino's Pizza, Kohlfeld Distributing Inc. and Schnucks Supermarkets for providing refreshments every year for the volunteers. Appreciation goes out to Cape Auto Sales for donating the use of our "Santa sleighs" on delivery night.
There are so many organizations, businesses, and individuals that make this endeavor a success. Thank you to all who participate in toy drives and collections, fundraisers for monetary donations and time and service for our children here in Cape Girardeau. Finally, thank you to the members of the Cape Girardeau Jaycees chapter who give up many nights during the holiday season to make this project happen year after year.
The holiday season is a time for giving and sharing. The people of Cape Girardeau continue to give charitably, placing the children of the Toybox on their shopping list every year. I am proud to be a part of this wonderful, giving community and honored to be involved with Toybox. Happy holidays.
Tracy Haggerty of the Cape Girardeau Jaycees is Toybox chairman.