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SHREWSBURY, Massachusetts – Due to an increase of families in need being relocated to our area, we are increasing our efforts to collect toys for the Holidays. Shrewsbury Youth and family Services along with The Department of Children and Families are accepting new, non-violent toys. All age groups accepted but there is particular need for infant and toddler toys as well as gift certificates for teens.
Now in its 9th year, this toy drive began 10 years ago on Christmas Eve. DSS Social Worker, Margie Simone, arrived hours late for dinner with her extended family. She explained to her family had she been tending to a 5 year old girl who had called 911 saying that her mother “would not wake up.” Paramedics responded to the call and found the mother unconscious from a heroin overdose. They took the mother away in an ambulance, and the little girl was taken to DSS at 5:30 on Christmas Eve. The little girl sat in Margie’s office, wrapped in a blanket from the paramedics, with no shoes or coat due to the rush of leaving her home. Margie made numerous phone calls to pre-screened foster homes trying to find the girl a place to stay. After more than an hour of phone calls, a foster home was found, but the foster family said that they had already eaten dinner and had no toys for the girl, but they would give her a bed for the night. Margie told the little girl that she would be going to a nice family, and the little girl’s response was, “Will Santa find me tonight?” Margie drove the little girl through McDonalds and dropped her off to the foster family, and she then went to CVS to buy any toy she could find to drop back off to the foster family for the little girl to have on Christmas morning. As Margie told her story to her large extended family, they looked around the room and saw an abundance of food on the table and presents under the tree. They wondered how an innocent little girl could be hungry and homeless on Christmas Eve right there in their own community. Margie’s 2 nephews, Rod Geer and Peter Frongillo, who were freshmen at St. John’s at the time, decided that very moment that they would start a toy drive so that every child could have toys at the holidays.
Please contribute to the Toy Drive at any of the following locations by 12/13!!
• Gymnastics Learning Center – 574 Lake Street
• Shrewsbury Senior Center – 98 Maple Avenue
• Shrewsbury Public Library – 609 Main Street
• Shaw’s Osco Pharmacy – White City Plaza
• Trinity Church Lobby – 440 Main Street
• Avidia Bank – 23 Maple Avenue
Your generosity will help brighten the holidays of these children and help answer this question: “Will Santa find me tonight?” For more information, please call (508) 753-6789.