CALGARY – An organization that helps Calgarians in need is looking for some help themselves.
Many struggling families are turning to the Women’s Centre for extra help this Christmas; the centre has just opened its annual Toy Room for children and moms. Regardless of their age, children and parents are able to browse the tables and pick their favourite item.
“It was like shopping with a friend, a lot of wanted opinions, do you think my son would like this or my daughter would like that,” says Jessie Lindley, volunteer with the centre.
Jessie’s first day of volunteering coincided with the opening of the toy room. Having recently moved to Calgary from Ontario, she’s pleasantly surprised by the generosity of Calgarians.
“There’s a bunch of teenagers who dropped off toys last night. They’d been given money from their grandparents for Christmas and instead of using it for themselves they went and bought toys.”
While the Centre is on pace to hand out more than 2000 gifts this year, officials worry they still won’t have enough toys for everyone.
There are several agencies that provide toys for children at Christmas but one large group opted out this year, adding more pressure on groups like the Women’s Centre of Calgary.
Storage shelves full of toys now sit empty and all donated toys are already on display.
The Centre hopes Calgarians will come through in a big way to help keep the Christmas spirit alive for everyone.
The Women’s Centre is short on all gifts, especially for teens.
It’s also handing out gifts for mothers.
Donations will be accepted at the shelter until December 21st. For more information visit www.womenscentrecalgary.org.