Auxiliary members, 41 and 42 Division police officers and other Service members joined hands to deliver toys to needy children in Scarborough on December 15.
Two Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) buses were crammed with gifts were delivered to Dr. Roz’s Healing Place, Juliette’s Place and L’Amoreaux Community Centre. The TTC donated the buses.
Const. Alison Burns, the Toronto Police Auxiliary Toy Drive coordinator, said the response to this year’s event was heartening.
“Everyone is going through tough times and things are slow,” she said. “We were however able to cover the orders we had.”
In its 24th year, the initiative was started to ensure that nearly 3,000 children and youth get the holiday they deserve.
Auxiliary member Johnny Yu was Santa Claus.
A/Supt. Joanna Beaven-Desjardins, the unit commander at 42 Division, was on hand to thank the volunteers.
“We got a lot of people volunteering and everyone wants to be part of this event,” she said. “Just to see the smiles on the faces of the young people when they get their presents is so fulfilling for the volunteers.”
Carrie Malin, an Auxiliary officer, started the Toy Drive over two decades ago to bring smiles to the faces of children in women’s shelters and at community centres.
Picking up the baton, other Auxiliary members have been at the forefront of the event for the last two decades.