Toy shop offers gifts with dignity

Black Press' Pennies for Presents helps parents give more to kids

Leila Dobson

Leila Dobson

There are few things more likely to make the Grinch’s heart grow three sizes than watching a child’s eyes glisten as they open the gift of a toy on Christmas morning.

And for parents, there are few things more fitting in the weeks leading up to Christmas than a stroll through a toy shop to choose just the right gift for their child. That’s why for 35 years the Salvation Army has set up a Christmas toy shop where parents who need a little help can walk the aisles and pick out the perfect gift for their little one.

“The Toy Shop is a magical place,” Salvation Army spokesperson Kyla Ferns said. “It’s so special to watch the faces of parents as they choose the perfect toys for their children.”

The gifts are given to the parents without charge so that poverty does not stand in the way of a child’s merry Christmas.

“The Salvation Army is all about dignity and hope,” program coordinator Pat Humble said. “That’s why we do it this way. The parents can go shopping and take the time to choose the right gift for their child, and it is just like shopping, except that they don’t need to pay.”

This year, the program is funded, in part, by Black Press’ annual Pennies for Presents fundraiser. The campaign has run for 15 years and involves the collection of change and other money at the Black Press office at 818 Broughton St. There are also collection boxes placed in businesses throughout Greater Victoria.

“The campaign is very important to us,” Black Press editorial director Kevin Laird said. “This is our chance to give back to our community.”

Last year’s campaign raised more than $14,000 that was divided among five local organizations. Funds from this year’s campaign will be divided between the Salvation Army and the Children’s Health Foundation of Vancouver Island.

“We have other campaigns, like our Angel Tag initiative where people can buy toys for the age and gender of their choice, but we find in that program, most people like to buy for small children,” he said. “Pennies for Presents lets us buy those gifts for age groups that are more challenging to accommodate. Older kids and teenagers need presents, too.”

Last year the Salvation Army toy shop gave out more than 5,200 toys to more than 900 children. The Stan Hagen Centre, located at Quadra Street and Hillside Avenue, where the toy shop is located, also helped needy families with more than 1,300 food hampers.

Information on the Stan Hagen Centre can be found at salvationarmycfs.com.

Donations to the Pennies for Presents Campaign can be dropped off during office hours (8 a.m. to 5 p.m., weekdays) throughout December or at any of the following businesses.

Mayfair Flower Shop – Suite 158-2945 Jacklin Rd  Langford

Quality Cobbler – Suite 140-2945 Jacklin Rd  Langford

Corona Foods – 2155 Sooke Rd

Dodds Furniture – 715 Finlayson Street  Victoria

Heirloom Linens – #380-777 Royal Oak Drive

Red Barn Market – 751 Vanalman Avenue, Victoria

Red Barn Market – 5550 West Saanich Road, Victoria

Red Barn Market – 5325 Cordova Bay Road, Victoria

Peppers Foods – 3829 Cadboro Bay Road, Saanich

Oak Bay Pharmasave – 2200 Oak Bay Ave. Oak Bay

Salon Modello – 2590 Cadboro Bay Road

Slater’s Meats – 2577 Cadboro Bay Rd, Oak Bay

Verico Select Mortgage 105-1497 Admirals Rd, Victoria

Verico Select Mortgage Westshore – 3212 Jacklin Road

Verico Select Mortgage – 1925 Oak Bay Avenue

Verico Select Mortgage – Suite 110-4460 Chatterton Way

Brick Langford – Suite 500-2945 Jacklin Rd

Capital Iron – 1900 Store Street  Victoria

4Cats Art Studio – 2279 Bowker Avenue

Standard Furniture – 758 Cloverdale Ave

Feys+Hobbs Canteen – 2249 Oak Bay Ave.

Goldstream Food Market – 976 Goldstream Ave.

 

 

 

 

 

Just Posted

Kay Gallivan paints a mural on the east wall of North Park’s Tiny Home Village (Kiernan Green / Victoria News Staff)
North Park Tiny Home Village opens at Royal Athletic Park lot to 30 unhoused

Residents will settle into new private units and the North Park community over the weekend

Carey Newman resigned from the Greater Victoria School District’s Indigenous Ad Hoc Committee May 13, citing ‘a pattern of systemic racism.’ (Black Press Media file photo)
‘Pattern of systemic racism’: SD61 Indigenous committee member resigns, calls for change

More than 350 people had added their names in support by midday Friday

The woman also received distracted driving tickets in 2018 and 2019. (Black Press File Photo)
Oak Bay driver gets third distracted driving ticket in four years

Officer caught the woman using her phone while at the wheel

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of May 11

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
MISSING: Salt Spring RCMP find woman’s car, still seek Island resident

Sinikka Gay Elliott is 5’3” with a slim build and dark brown short hair

A Saanich man received almost 10 years in Supreme Court in Courtenay for a shooting incident from 2018. Record file photo
Shooting incident on Island nets almost 10-year sentence

Saanich man was arrested without incident north of Courtenay in 2018

Bradley Priestap in an undated photo provided to the media some time in 2012 by the London Police Service.
Serial sex-offender acquitted of duct tape possession in B.C. provincial court

Ontario sex offender on long-term supervision order was found with one of many ‘rape kit’ items

Rich Coleman, who was responsible for the gaming file off and on from 2001 to 2013, was recalled after his initial testimony to the Cullen Commission last month. (Screenshot)
Coleman questioned over $460K transaction at River Rock during B.C. casinos inquiry

The longtime former Langley MLA was asked about 2011 interview on BC Almanac program

Steven Shearer, <em>Untitled. </em>(Dennis Ha/Courtesy of Steven Shearer)
Vancouver photographer’s billboards taken down after complaints about being ‘disturbing’

‘Context is everything’ when it comes to understanding these images, says visual art professor Catherine Heard

Most Read