Nonprofit Person to Person holds annual 'Toy Store' in Darien
A nonprofit serving lower Fairfield County offered a holiday helping hand Thursday.
Person to Person held its annual "Toy Store" at the Anderson Youth & Community Center on Saint Luke's Church Campus in Darien.
"We're really working with people trying to make sure they don't become homeless, making sure they have food on the table, and then the toy drive comes, and it's all just joy and love," says Person to Person CEO Nancy Coughlin.
Volunteers say parents made appointments months in advance to pick out a present for their children.
The donations included more than toys. There were watches and beauty products for teens.
Each child also received a book and each family a board game.
Nearly 50 businesses and organizations contributed donations, and the King School in Stamford donated stuffed animals.
"You really see how relieved people are, how happy they are, how grateful they are. It means more than just having that gift or that toy or that stuffed animal. It really means knowing that the holidays are going to be joyful," says Coughlin.
Organizers say the need the nonprofit saw during the pandemic has not subsided and that slots for the toy shop filled up quickly.
"In 2019, we provided enough food to prepare just under 1 million meals. This year, we provided 2.7 million. We see throughout the year, people when they're struggling and when they're at their lowest. Just to have them be full of joy, it really is a beautiful experience," says Coughlin.
Person to Person has been holding the Toy Store for lower Fairfield County families for 48 years.
Click here for Person to Person's Amazon wish list.