“We were not able to have anything the Christmas of 1999. My mother, a friend and I went to the mall and have seen the guard standing for the Toys For Tots organization in Michigan. I have a letter for Santa Clause because I was only 7 years old at that time. Instead of giving it to Santa Clause, I dropped it to the Toys for Toys collection jar for donation mistakenly. Couple of days later we were invited to attend the toy drive. I was given so many toys and a turkey for Christmas dinner. It became an inspiration to me that there are people that really care.
A year after, I asked my principal at my school if he could help me organize a toy drive for Toys For Tots. My mother helped me do the flyers for the parents and other students brought an unwrapped toy for the needy children in the neighborhood. The school had contacted the Marines from Selfridge Airbase, who sponsor a toy drive every year, for permission and the city mayor’s office was also notified. The teachers in my academy sent my letter for the Oakland Press newspaper.
The toy drive was very successful. We collected so many toys and we had the Marines pick it up to be donated to the needy in the area. I feel good and I have more confidence that if I put my head and heart into something good, the feeling is priceless, that I did something. In fact, I was given a Certificate of Appreciation by the Marines and so with the City Mayor in Pontiac, MI. We were residing there before then and I was born in Michigan. We just moved here in Indiana summer of 2008. Last Christmas, I led my class in collecting can goods and money so we can help people that are really in need. It was successful and I'm planning to volunteer more with my mother. That's why we found this, for we are looking for a good cause that we can help with our service for we don't have money to contribute. My Dad is disabled and my mother takes care of him while taking online classes. I am currently a freshman student. My mother is getting her Masters in Psychology. When she graduates, she is looking forward to helping those with mental illnesses.”