The Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Resort and Spa’s Toy Drive for the Society of Organized Services had another successful year, raising a total of $13,619.25, including gift cards, cash donations and an RBC grant. A total of 1,813 toys were donated to the SOS as a result of the drive.
The annual event was held on Wednesday, Nov. 27. Thousands of people came through the Tigh-Na-Mara for a complimentary breakfast in exchange for toys and donations to the SOS.
Executive director of the Society of Organized Services Susanna Newton says the event was spectacular.
“It was a great turnout and we’re excited about the results,” said Newton. “All the wonderful gifts and gift cards will be enjoyed by local families, and the monetary donations will greatly help us reach our Christmas campaign goal of $120,000.”
In total, the drive raised $3,758 in gift card donations and $8,861.25 in cash and cheques. All that cash which was augmented by an RBC grant of $1,000.
The drive fell just short of 2018 numbers, the best year on record. 2018 saw 1,990 toys donated and $13,893 in gift cards, cash, cheque and RBC grant.
For those who missed the drop off, fear not – Newton says there’s plenty of time to help the SOS reach their Christmas fundraising goal.
“We’re open right up until Christmas Eve – our distribution is the week before that. So we ask that all donations come in hopefully the week before Christmas, but they will never be wasted. We will save those [late] donations as well, and monetary donations, we’re hoping to reach our goal of $120,000 this year. We have a little bit of a way to go to that,” said Newton.
In-person donations can be dropped off at the SOS Parksville Community Services Centre on 245 West Hirst Ave. from Monday to Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., or to the Qualicum Beach location at 744 Primrose St. The Qualicum Beach location is open Monday, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The SOS accepts new, unwrapped gifts as well as cash and cheques which go towards purchasing grocery store gift cards for families, individuals and seniors. The toys go towards stocking the shelves of the SOS Toy Shop, where low income parents, grandparents and caregivers can shop for free to help bring the magic of Christmas to their families.