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Toys needed for Christmas distribution to children from three counties, including Pratt

Jennifer Stultz
Pratt Tribune
Toys for Tots activists (from left) Barb Schmidt, Mike Schmidt, Jason Leslie, Kristi Leslie and Scott Smith put donations into the Southwest Truck Parts mini-semi on Saturday in front of Pratt’s Walmart. They are collecting toys for children from Pratt, Kiowa and Kingman counties for Christmas 2020.  [photo by Jennifer Stultz]

Every year the South Central Kansas Toys for Tots organization successfully gathers and distributes hunderds of toys to children in Pratt County. In 2020, even more children will be needing toys as Toys for Tots has added two additional counties to the distibution list, Kiowa and Kingman, and the group is ready with giving opportunties and "Stuff the Truck" events.

"Donations have been down due to less activities we can hold due to COVID this year," said co-ordinator Jason Leslie. "However, we are doing better than what I expected during these challenging times."

The Pratt Toys for Tots division has held two Stuff the Truck events already, the most recent one just last Saturday in front of Pratt's Walmart.

Leslie said the next scheduled toy donation event is Friday, November 27, which is when Toys for Tots will team up with the Pratt Fire Department for another Stuff the Truck event at the Pratt Walmart. Between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Walmart shoppers may drop off toys and/or cash donations at the fire truck in the Walmart parking lot. Toys or gifts must be new and unwrapped and age appropriate for a child from newborn up to 18 years of age. 

"Our cut-off date for donations is December 9 and until that time, toys may be dropped off at various drop-off locations in the city or at the Shelter Insurance office in Pratt," Leslie said.

Toys for needy children in Pratt, Kiowa and Kingman counties will be distributed on Saturday, December 12 at the Kansas Army National Guard Armory in Pratt from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. 

Prior to that time, however, families who have children wishing to receive toys must apply on-line and anyone who is willing to volunteer to help with fund-raising and collection of new donated toys in Kiowa, Kingman or Pratt counties is asked to contact Jason Leslie at 620-672-2257 or on-line at www.pratt-ks.toysfortots.org.

The Pratt High School National Honor Society has also started a Toys for Tots donation drive with drop-off boxes for new, unwrapped childrens toys at the preschool, South West, LMS or PHS buildings. Start date was November 9, end date for donations for cash or toys is December 9. Raffle tickets for Pratt Chamber Bucks are part of the donation experience with the national honor society’s toy drive.

Toys for Tots is a national organization under the direction of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve.