Spreading Joy In Savoy
It’s time to give back which is exactly what dozens of Champaign County residents were doing throughout Friday for Fox Champaign’s Joy of Sharing.
Ceasar Perez, a former United States Marine, started the Champaign County Toys for Tots in 2003.
"They just they don't have Christmas,” Perez said.
He said he's seen too many families without anything during the holidays.
"The thing that Toys for Tots does is deliver hope,” Perez said. “That morning that they wake up on Christmas day and there's no presents under the tree, or there's no tree, it's a pretty empty feeling."
Bags full of toys were donated to fox Illinois’ Joy of Sharing, while dozens of community members donated to the Ronald McDonald house and the Eastern Illinois food bank.
"It's good to give back to the community,” Duane Stafford, a resident said. “Especially this time of year, to those in need, it's one of the things to think about this time of year, throughout the year, but especially now."
Kristen Bosch of the Eastern Illinois Food Bank said 1 of 5 children in East Central Illinois don't know where their next meal will come from.
"All of us know somebody whether that be a family member, a friend, a neighbor, who doesn't know where their next meal is coming from,” Bosch said. “And that's why it’s so important to band together and help our neighbors this holiday season."
Perez said every year, toys deplete before serving all the families in need.
He said this drive will definitely help their cause by gifting at least a hundred kids.
"I'm grateful that you guys are once again doing this,” Perez said. “And helping out and making sure we can provide that hope for the Champaign County."
At 6:00 p.m. there were nearly $300 in cash donations, 28 pounds of food for the Food Bank, and over a hundred toys donated for Toys for Tots in the Savoy location.