This year, Houston was devastated by one of the most powerful hurricanes to hit the United States in a decade. Hurricane Harvey, produced searing images of men, women, and children trapped on rooftops, waiting to be rescued from their homes by boat or helicopter. And while the first priority of parents is putting a roof over their heads and providing food, the youngest victims of this natural disaster have needs that don't come into play. This is the time to comfort and begin the healing process for, not just our children, but our entire community, particularly those who have experienced a very traumatizing event like Hurricane Harvey.
“Toys for the Kids” offers our community an opportunity to lift the hearts and spirits of underprivileged and minority children and their families. This year, now more than ever, we want to bring joy and cheer in an otherwise very stressful time for the effected families in our community.
Over five thousand children attend the event. With a large number of attendees, the event takes place at Houston’s George R. Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston. The event begins as early as 10 AM. Weeks prior to the event, volunteers gather to coordinate event operations as well as wrap as many as thousands of gifts. Our faithful volunteers show exceptional honor in wrapping and preparing for the event. They spend countless hours setting up and breaking down prior and after the event. Volunteers take their great pride in also being a part of the event. These volunteers donate their time to help share the spirit of the holiday season to those that cannot. It is a time that all can call, “Tis the Season to be Jolly.”
The event typically includes a grand parade entrance, food and refreshments, a moon bounce, and entertainment from local singers or groups. The morning starts with thousands of children waiting in excitement as well as those that would like to meet the Congresswoman. The parade highlights Congresswoman Sheila Jackson along with Mr. & Mrs. Clause and other dignitaries that donate their time and support to the event. Bands honor the parade and event with joyful music to set the holiday season into place and following the parade, the Congresswoman speaks about the good deeds of the day. The idea is to remind others that their generosity shares blessing with those less fortunate so they can experience the joy of the holiday season. Every year is a successful year, which not only brings the community together, but reaches out to those that want to share their holiday spirit.
At the close of the event, children leave with smiles that can never be forgotten. Children bring home toys that they happily unwrapped at the event.
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