Volunteers needed to sort Toys for Tots this Tuesday

Toys for Tots could use a hand as they sort through what they’ve collected so far at 5 p.m. Tuesday at the YWCA, located at 138 Lamar Ave.

For more information, contact the YWCA at 903-785-5221.

Toys will continue to be collected for the distribution scheduled for 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 15. Tuesday, the work will be to sort toys already on hand

Toys for Tots is a mission of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve started in 1947 to provide a new, unwrapped toy for needy children at Christmas. Every Marine Corps Reserve unit is required to operate a Toys for Tots in its local community. Paris falls under the unit based in Texarkana, which is 90 miles away. Which is why the Sgt. J. Hoskins Detachment of the Marine Corps League took over the local program.

“This is our third year doing Toys for Tots,” said John O’Donnell, the local coordinator. “It was always hard for them to push all the way to Paris.”

The local YWCA also helps. A former boxing ring has been converted into a Toys for Tots warehouse, and the Y handles applications for those seeking toys.

“Unlike organizations like the United Way that look for needs like clothes, we’re trying to fill that want,” O’Donnell said. “It takes a lot of effort from the community and a lot of teamwork.”

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Jeff Parish Jeff Parish is a high school English teacher and journalist. He has worked for the Greenville Herald-Banner, Dallas Morning News, The Paris News and Galveston County Daily News, among others. For comments, feedback or suggestions, you can email him at jeff@eparistexas.com.