Forest Service Employees Help Fulfill Holiday Hopes for Local Children
For the second straight year, Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests employees worked with the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation, a non-profit public charity, to provide happiness and hope to disadvantaged children during the holiday season. Forest Service employees organized toy drop-off sites at District Office locations across the National Forest, collecting more than 100 toys. Forest Service employees also helped organize and staff new drop-off points at area WalMarts, and even organized special Smokey Bear guest appearances. Toys for Tots was also able to add an additional pick-up site this year with staffing assistance from Forest Service employees who helped distribute the toys to families in need in mulitple communities.
The toys, books and other gifts collected and distributed through Toys for Tots offer these children recognition, confidence and a positive memory for a lifetime. Last year the Marine Toys for Tots Program benefitted 7.2 million less fortunate children.
Thomas Black, a wildland firefighter and forestry technician on the Chattooga River Ranger District, spearheaded the partnership with Toys for Tots and has helped expand the group’s local efforts. Here he works with young volunteers to bag toys at the new Habersham County pick-up site on December 21, 2012.