Contact: NOVEC Public Relations, 1-888-335-0500, firstname.lastname@example.org
Marine Corps Reserve needs gifts for adolescents and teens
MANASSAS, Va. – The Northern Virginia Electric Cooperative’s group of employee volunteers, NOVEC HELPS, is collecting non-perishable Thanksgiving food for area food banks through Nov. 15. It will also collect new unwrapped toys, gift bags, and wrapping paper for the United States Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots project through Dec. 9.
Donations may be dropped off at these NOVEC Offices:
10323 Lomond Drive
Manassas, VA 20109
14500 Minnieville Road
Woodbridge, VA 22193
Hours: 8:15 a.m.–5 p.m., Monday-Friday
Suggested food items for Operation Turkey include bread and muffin mixes, instant mashed potatoes, pasta, rice, boxed desserts, sugar, flour, evaporated milk, prepared pie crusts, and canned meats, vegetables, cranberry sauce, fruit, pie filling, and gravy.
NOVEC HELPS will deliver donations to area food banks, which will distribute the food to people in need.
Toys for Tots
The Marine Corps Reserve is a 501(c)(3) organization that uses the annual charity drive to “motivate less fortunate children to grow into responsible, productive, patriotic citizens and community leaders.”
This year, John Deitle, a retired Marine who has coordinated the region’s Toys for Tots drive for several years, says the organization especially needs gifts for area adolescents and teens: “We always receive lots of toys for toddlers and children under 10, but we need gifts for older children. They often have to watch their younger brothers and sisters open gifts while there’s nothing for them.”
Deitle, a NOVEC employee, also points out that gifts do not have to be toys: “Many youngsters love books, and they often need winter hats, scarves, and gloves.”
The local Marine Reservists say they need gift bags — especially extra-large bags that can cover a bicycle or tricycle — wrapping paper, tape, and ribbon.
Charity Navigator, an independent watchdog organization that evaluates charitable organizations in the U.S., lists the Toys for Tots Foundation as a top-rated charity. Last year, 96 percent of all donations went toward providing toys, books, and other gifts to less fortunate children. Less than 4 percent was spent on fundraising and overhead.
Toys for Tots began in Los Angeles in 1947. Major Bill Hendricks, USMCR, was inspired by his wife when she tried to donate a homemade Raggedy Ann doll to a needy child, but couldn't find an organization that was collecting toys. At her suggestion, Hendricks gathered a group of local Marine reservists. They coordinated and collected approximately 5,000 toys for local children that year from collection bins placed outside of Warner Brothers movie theaters. In 1948, Toys for Tots was launched as a national campaign. Hendricks used his position as director of public relations for Warner Brothers Studio to enlist celebrity support, as well as have Walt Disney Studios design the red toy train logo.
NOVEC HELPS is working on the 2016 Toys for Tots drive in concert with the Clifton Lion’s Club and Dominion Cruisers Club.
About NOVEC HELPS
NOVEC HELPS, Hands Engaged in Local Public Service, is a 501 (c)(3) organization. For more information, visit www.novechelps.org.