Elizabeth City, N.C. – At a warehouse in Elizabeth City, people are working hard to make Christmas wishes come true.
It’s where the Salvation Army is organizing all the toys and clothes they’ve collected for kids in several area counties – a mission close to their hearts.
“For a parent to tell their child, ‘Well, we weren’t able to get you anything for Christmas,’ really, really gets to you,” said Major Butch Mallard.
Unfortunately, with just a few days left to collect, they only have half the toys they need.
“In northeastern North Carolina, we are in a depressed economy. We haven’t caught up with the rest of the country as far as unemployment,” said Mallard.
More than 1,500 families turned to them for help this year. Of those, there are still about 700 kids who need someone to pick up one of their tags on trees at area businesses.
Each one is for a specific kid in our community, like Samantha Ledbetter’s kids, ages six and nine.
Things have been tough since she was laid off.
“I just want them to be happy and I want them to get everything they want,” said Ledbetter, “The main thing I love about Christmas is seeing the look on their face when they open their presents.”
That magical moment may be missing for some families unless more people step forward – now.
They only have until Saturday to collect all the toys that they need. After that it will take about a week to get all of the toys sorted and organized to pass out to families.
To help get them closer to their goal, Newschannel 3 decided to make them part of our Operation Wish List by giving them $1,000 to help buy more toys.
The money will help some kids, but they need you to take action to make sure every child is taken care of.
“I would just ask that you examine your own selves and if you can spare it, to be willing to help a child and put a smile in a child’s face for Christmas,” said Mallard.
The trees with tags on them can be found at Walmart, IHOP, Roses, the Vicki Villa Restaurant, JCPenney, Albemarle Hospital and Southgate Mall.
For more information – click here.