January 18, 2024 - 8:23 pm
Each Christmas there are several organizations that sponsor toy drives to help less-fortunate families give presents to their children. The Marine Corps’ Toys for Tots may be the most visible, but there are smaller groups that also help local families.
In the spirit of giving and spreading holiday cheer, the Armed Forces Chamber of Commerce hosted its 7th Annual Christmas Toy Giveaway, bringing smiles to the faces of children from military families across Southern Nevada. The event saw the donation of more than 1,500 toys that the chamber valued at an impressive $45,000. The gesture aimed to bring joy and festive spirit to the young hearts not only residing in Boulder City, but also in Bunker, Goodsprings, Henderson, Jean, Las Vegas, Laughlin, Mesquite, Moapa, Mount Charleston, North Las Vegas, Primm, and Searchlight.
Parents and guardians signed up on the chamber website. The organization held two giveaway events where kids and teens picked out unwrapped toys. Andre’ Haynes, the founder and CEO of the Armed Forces Chamber, expressed his gratitude about the event saying, “We’re dedicated to supporting our military families, especially during the holiday season. Our annual Christmas Toy Giveaway is a small gesture of appreciation for the sacrifices these families make. Seeing the joy on the faces of the children we serve is truly heartwarming.”
The donation of toys brought happiness to families who often face unique challenges due to the nature of military life. With spouses serving in various capacities and locations, military families endure long periods of separation, and the holiday season can be particularly challenging for both parents and children. It’s interesting to note that Haynes is not a veteran, but said he formed the chamber in order to provide patriotic support to the veteran community. The toy giveaway is only one of several events the group sponsors. “The Armed Forces Chamber donation aimed to alleviate some of the stress and bring a sense of normalcy and joy to these families,” he explained. “The event highlighted the importance of community support in making the holiday season brighter for those who have dedicated their lives to serving the nation.” He can be reached at email@example.com
Chuck N. Baker is an award-winning journalist and a Vietnam War Purple Heart veteran. He can currently be heard hosting “Real Estate Cabaret” Sundays at 2:30 p.m. streaming on the internet via “OverTheHumpRadio.com”