Despite Covid, Mac’s toy fund passes on | Life

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Southern West Virginia is truly a people-based community focused on taking care of themselves. When one door closes, another always seems to open. That’s what happened to Mac’s Toy Fund this year.

Macs Toy Fund has stopped personal donation due to Covid concerns and has decided to offer grants to organizations that care for children. MountainHeart Community Services is one of those organizations tasked with providing children with toys, clothing, and art supplies, and United Way has partnered with Mountain Heart to provide shoes.

A little story of Mac’s Toy Fund is that it was founded during the Great Depression in the 1930s. At a time when the country and many small communities were hurt, Ted “Mac” McDowell, the then editor of the Beckley Post Herald (later The Register-Herald), decided to set up a fund to provide Christmas gifts for children in need. The original fund raised over $ 100, which was a handsome sum at the time. Originally a success, Mac’s Toy Fund has been an annual Christmas tradition for 91 years.

The fund before Covid could be seen Over 6,200 tickets were distributed so that the children can come by and choose their favorite gift for new or used Christmas presents. With Covid protocols, however, the idea of ​​gathering so many people in one place seems to be at odds with the Christmas cheer. Despite the Covid roadblock, it wouldn’t be the end of Mac’s toys or gifts for children in need. Instead, the organization has evolved over time and now gives grants to organizations that can provide children with toys, clothing, and other necessities.

Through charitable donations and the help of the Beckley Area Foundation, Mac’s has raised over $ 40,000 to 17 different child support organizations. Two of those organizations are, of course, MountainHeart Community Services and the United Way of Southern West Virginia, which have come together to make the task of collecting and distributing items to eligible children and families more efficient. The United Way of Southern West Virginia will use funds received from Mac’s to purchase shoes for over 150 children, while MountainHeart Community Services will collect and distribute toys, clothing, and art supplies. MountainHeart determines eligibility and distributes the wrapped gift through a secure and orderly drive-through service.

Although money was allocated and When gifts are bought, there is always the option to offer and do more. Mac’s Toy Fund is a rewarding event and community staple that many children in our community look forward to year after year and that many parents rely on. Without the community service of the organizations and volunteers working with Mac’s, many parents couldn’t bring their children the memorable Christmas they so deserve.

If you would like to donate to one of these organizations to give a child in need an unforgettable Christmas, please do not hesitate. If you have any questions, the United Way of Southern West Virginia can be reached by calling 304-253-2111. Visit him at 110 Croft St., Beckley, WV 25801, visit unitedwayswv.com, or post a letter via PO Box 5456, Beckley, WV 25801.


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