Toys for Staten Island packed, but we need more


Debbie Brown is intent on her packing duties.

Our first packing party was a quick half-hour effort today (Saturday) at the donated Storage Solutions warehouse space in East Greenbush for our “Toys for Staten Island Kids” drive.

Club volunteers quickly sorted and boxed more than 400 items for the kids whose homes and families were ravaged by Super-Storm Sandy.

The final deadline for contributions is Thursday, December 13, after which we’ll box and ship the last batch of toys, games, books and items collected by the Southern Rensselaer County Rotary Club.

While 400 may seem like a sizeable number, it actually is much less than we had hoped to get. We were counting on SRC members to solicit donations from neighbors, family, friends and work colleagues to help swell the pile, but with rare exceptions that hasn’t happened.

So, we’re asking one more time to help give a bit of Christmas or Hanukkah to kids who lost everything they had in the storm that has left their neighborhoods in ruins, some of their own homes damaged  beyond repair, and their hopes dashed for any semblance of normalcy in the immediate future.

Please dig a little deeper to come up with a few more toys each, and ask people you know to consider giving you one toy or more to bring to our December 13 meeting so we can add to the total giving.

Yet another of our neighbors just this afternoon dropped off a donation as did more than a half-dozen other neighboring households, simply because we asked. We suspect people you know might respond if only you reach out to them.

Thank you for all who have helped so far — particularly Murray Forth who has been so helpful in so many ways, and Rob Mangold for donating storage space  and other items, Plus, of course, today’s toy packers — Murray, Doris Calamaras, Debbie and Peter Brown, Stewart Wagner, Carole Spencer and Charlie Foote.

— April & Bill Dowd


Doris Calamaras and Stewart Wagner sort through the donations …


… while Peter Brown does likewise.

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