Amarillo, TX - Every year, thousands of area children are left without toys on Christmas.
Today, local organizations kick-started an effort in hopes of turning that around.
The Toys for Tots drive in Amarillo is an annual event; they keep doing it because the need keeps growing.
Christmas is the time for giving, and many people in our area are starting early.
"I brought a doll for a little girl and some little puppy dogs for stocking stuffers. I brought a bear and a little stuffed doggie," says Laura & Mia Salas-Gonzales, donating toys.
Since many children will not be receiving toys for Christmas, the toys are coming to them.
"It's very exciting, very exciting that at least they are going to have one thing, if not anything else, that they get to open on Christmas," says Laura & Mia Salas-Gonzales, donating toys.
The Marine Corps and Hardcore Motorcycle Ministries joined together for another year of the Toys for Tots drive.
The kick-off event brought in thousands of donated toys.
Once all of the toys are received, they will be delivered to the reserve center.
They will then be sorted out so that they can be ready in time for Christmas.
"There's nothing that compares to Christmas Eve and watching those little kids' faces. They usually come to the door and we hand them their toys. Wow, it means so much to us, it is one of the highlights of the year for us," says Gary Burd, Senior Pastor at Christian Heritage Church.
The goal of the event is not just to provide children with toys, but to provide them with a better life.
"All we are trying to do is just put a smile on their face and make their year a little bit faster, start the new year on a new foot and just keep on going. Make that one year that might make a difference in shaping how they are going to become, what they are going to become whenever they're older," says Sgt. Robert Guadarrama, Toys for Tots coordinator, Marine Corps.
There is still time for those wanting to donate or sign up children who need toys for Christmas.
You can visit toysfortots.org.