By Mary O’KEEFE
Every year the Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Support Group, volunteers and station staff work together to gather food and toys for families in need in the area.
The Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Toy and Food Drive began just before Thanksgiving collecting items that will be delivered to over 100 families on Dec. 17. The group got a food boost with generous donations from the La Cañada Flintridge Thanksgiving Day 5-K Run that had participants and visitors bring a non-perishable food item, but what is still needed are items for under the Christmas tree.
“Right now we are short a lot of toys,” said Lisa Dutton, CV Sheriff’s volunteer. “We need toys for boys and girls 8-to-12 years old.”
The team of volunteers receives names of families in need from local schools and churches or family members will contact the CV Sheriff’s Station and ask to be added onto the list. Volunteers pack food and toys in bags and then CV Sheriff deputies, Explorers, Montrose Search and Rescue members, support group members and volunteers deliver the bags to families.
In the past, everything from soccer balls to bicycles have been donated.
“We love bicycles and helmets, that would be wonderful,” Dutton said. “The kids like sports equipment like soccer or footballs and little purses for girls. Anything that is age appropriate.”
Donations can be made at any of the Sheriff’s Toy and Food barrels that are found throughout La Crescenta and La Cañada Flintridge.
“They are at all Ralphs and Vons markets [in the area], at Tom’s Toys in Montrose, and Wells Fargo and Citizens banks on Foothill Boulevard and at Foothill Athletic Club,” Dutton said.
There is a barrel at the Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Station as well.
The CV community has always been very generous. Last year, thanks to donations from the community, about 200 families were helped with holiday bags.
“We are hoping that donations are [temporarily low] because of the recent windstorm,” Dutton said.
Many residents suffered wind damage and have spent the weekend cleaning up. Dutton is hoping that now that things have settled down the barrels will be filled with toys.
Donation barrel locations:
Ralph Markets at 2675 Foothill Blvd., La Crescenta and 521 Foothill Blvd., La Cañada.
Vons Market at 635 Foothill Blvd., La Cañada.
Toms Toys at 2281 Honolulu Ave., Montrose.
Wells Fargo at 4000 Foothill Blvd., La Crescenta.
Citizens Bank at 858 Foothill Blvd., La Cañada.
CV Sheriff’s Station at 4554 Briggs Ave., La Crescenta