Toys for tots in Sidney: it’s a wrap

Presents for kids from the community to be delivered before Christmas

Mary Smart and Grant MacDonald team up with chamber and Rotary members and other volunteers helping out with Rob McMillan’s second annual Secret Santa: Toys for Tots wrapping party Sunday.

Rob McMillan’s Canoe Cove Restaurant was busy Sunday with the sounds of scissors cutting through paper and volunteers talking happily amongst themselves.

Volunteer present wrappers from the Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, local Rotary Club and more were busily making sure the hundreds of gifts were ready for the  start of distribution on Monday. This week, McMillan’s second annual Secret Santa: Toys for Tots campaign is giving presents to children whose families are in need and the organizer couldn’t be happier with the level of support received from the community.

“I’m very happy with the amount of donations from people, the corporate sponsors and more,” McMillan said in between carrying armloads of wrapped presents to waiting vehicles for delivery.

McMillan started the Toys for Tots effort last year, holding events at Canoe Cove and getting out into the community for help.

This year, he stepped up when the local Kiwanis Club folded and could no longer run their Christmas gifts for children campaign.

Enlisting the help of the community and local service groups, McMillan expanded his effort to keep the giving season alive.

He sought the support of local individuals and businesses — including CFAX 1070’s Santa’s Anonymous campaign — to shore up the campaign. That effort also includes the Peninsula News Review’s own Coins for Kids campaign that saw readers donate more than $3,000.

McMillan will be distributing the gifts this week at the soccer club building in Iroquois Park.

Clients of the Sidney Lions Club Food Bank who qualify will be directed to the Toys for Tots distribution area after they receive their food hampers.

“Last year was my first year doing this,” McMillan said. “This year, I had a lot more support and generosity from people.”

One person even donated a large doll house, which McMillan is raffling off to raise money.

Whoever dropped it off, he said, did so without leaving their name and he wanted to thank them for their generosity.

Sunday’s wrapping party had plenty of food and drinks donated and all of the wrapping paper came from Glenn Smith of Buyer’s Choice Home Inspections. He was at Canoe Cove Sunday, helping make sure all of the presents were wrapped.

Distribution of the gifts for kids started Monday and McMillan said he’s grateful to the entire community.

“A big thank you has to go out to the community,” he said. “A lot of people did a lot of work.”



Just Posted

Increased rental construction boosts housing starts across Greater Victoria

Rest of Vancouver Island experiencing spillover effect from Greater Victoria

Some showers, high of 18 C for Tuesday

Plus your weekly forecast

Survey finds 15 per cent of Canadian cannabis users with a valid licence drive within two hours of using

Survey also finds middle-aged men are upping their usage following legalization

Canada’s top 10 influencers have a following more than four times Canada’s population

Their combined social media followers comes in at 169 million

VIDEO: Fun without sun: Hundreds enjoy Family Fest on Victoria Day

Families enjoy activities in Veterans Memorial Park

Should B.C. already be implementing province-wide fire bans?

A petition is calling for B.C. Wildfire Service to issue a ban to reduce risk of human caused wildfires

Growing wildfire prompts evacuation of High Level, Alta.

Chuckegg Creek fire has been burning for several day, but grew substantially Sunday

Top women’s hockey player Natalie Spooner coming to B.C.

Natalie Spooner special guest at annual Grindstone charity weekend in Kelowna

Take-home drug testing kits latest pilot to help curb B.C.’s overdose crisis

Researchers look to see if fentanyl testing could be a useful tool for those who use drugs alone

Facebook takes down anti-vaxxer page that used image of late Canadian girl

Facebook said that the social media company has disabled the anti-vaccination page

Search crews rescue kids, 6 and 7, stranded overnight on Coquitlam mountain

Father and two youngsters fall down a steep, treacherous cliff while hiking Burke Mountain

Raptors beat Bucks 118-112 in 2OT thriller

Leonard has 36 points as Toronto cuts Milwaukee’s series lead to 2-1

Rescue crews suspend search for Okanagan kayaker missing for three days

71-year-old Zygmunt Janiewicz was reported missing Friday

Most Read