Presents were distributed to families within the Riverbank community earlier this month bringing joy and good tidings to parents and their children. The gift giving season is upon us and for some families it can be a stressful time of year. There are a few programs out there that provide help to families in need and there is one in particular that has been providing toys for children that many may know; the Marine Corps Toys for Tots. For over five years the Marine Corps and Central Valley Community Resources (CVCR) have collaborated to bring Christmas cheer to families in the Riverbank area.
This mission to provide children with toys during the holiday season is shared by their partnership with Riverbank Unified School District, C.A.S.A. del Rio FRC, Valley Improvement Projects, and Boy Scout Troop 1100 along with CVCR and the Marines. The community participated in the toy drive and made the toy giveaway possible by donating new unwrapped toys. Cash donations were also received by groups like Riverbank Federated Women’s Club and Royal Neighbors-Chapter 9890 in Riverbank.
CVCR CEO Darlene Barber Martinez was thankful to all the businesses that allowed them to put donation boxes in their business like the Riverbank Library, Lana Clayton Farmers Insurance, Glam Salon, the City of Riverbank, One Church, Riverbank Industrial Complex, Monica Perez Farmers Insurance, Riverbank Cannabis Collective, Kiwi’s Custom Guns, Casa Del Rio, SaveMart, F&M Bank, Self Help Credit Union and Riverbank Unified School District. Due to the toy donations, 280 children received gifts for Christmas in the Riverbank community this year. Families picked up their toys throughout the afternoon.
The toy distribution was on Saturday, Dec. 14 at the Cardozo Middle School cafeteria. Families registered for the toy giveaway in November.
“The toy donations were low this year compared to last year,” stated Barber Martinez. “It is an all-volunteer and community effort to make sure that no child goes without a toy for Christmas.”