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Schools needed to help with annual Toys for Tots campaign and participate in the School Spirit Challenge

There won't be a big celebratory wrap-up day in the 13 ON YOUR SIDE parking lot, like in year's past, but Toys for Tots is still happening!

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — COVID-19 has changed the way many counties will conduct their annual Toys for Tots campaigns, but here at 13 ON YOUR SIDE, we still want you to launch toy drives within your school and community.  

We know the pandemic will force many schools to opt out this year but several of the county T4T programs depend on this school campaign for the bulk of their toys so we felt like we should give it a try.  The big news?  There will be no celebratory wrap-up day in the parking lot.  There’s just no way we can do that safely.  Instead, here’s what we have in mind:

Nov. 5 – Nov. 20
There will be announcements on the Morning News each day, inviting schools to join us.  There will once again be a $1,000.00 prize awarded to one participating school – selected by random drawing.  You may launch your campaign as soon as you like.  Many will start before Thanksgiving.

RELATED: Toys for Tots registration is now open

Nov. 23 – Dec. 10
Catherine Behrendt each day at catherinebehrendt@13OnYourSide.com to report how your school is doing.  Tell us about your grand total of toys.  We will share those numbers on our Morning News each day.  The more photos and videos you send us, the more “airtime” your school will get!  Show us your toy pile.  Tell us about an incentive you’ve dreamed up.  Get video of your principal doing something silly to encourage donations.  Have fun with it!

Dec. 11 
The final day.  Again – no big party in the parking lot.  Your toys will be picked up by your county program volunteers.  We will report final numbers all morning and at the end of the 6:30 half hour … we will draw a school to receive the $1,000.00 prize. 

I know that last day of the campaign made it lots of fun and we are sick about eliminating it.  But our ultimate goal is to make sure every child receives something under the tree on Christmas morning.  With all of the restrictions brought on by the pandemic, we know that more families are struggling more than ever before.  And children have had to give up so many family and cultural traditions.  Let’s be sure they get a good Christmas!  

Once again, please email Catherine Behrendt catherinebehrendt@wzzm13.com to register your school to participate.


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