If you’re looking to support a much-needed local initiative, there are thousands of babies and young children in Tampa who could use your help.
The FBI Citizens Academy Alumni Association’s Tampa chapter (FBITCAA) is collecting toys for children in need with its Christmas in July Toy Drive. The initiative is focused on supporting children in our community who are admitted to the hospital for injuries due to abuse or neglect or are born with medical problems due to illicit substances used by the mother during pregnancy.
Aiming to donate 1,000 toys this July, the goal is to bring hope and joy to some of our community’s most vulnerable newborns, children, and those in foster care.
The organization is collecting donations as well as encouraging supporters to purchase toys through its Amazon Registry here:
Ms. Katie McCarey, who is leading this initiative, says that hospitals typically receive support through toys and donations during the holiday season, but in the summer months, many children who have been taken from their homes for safety reasons are left at the hospital without toys, blankets, dolls, and other comforting items.
“Some of the most needed items include things like baby blankets, stuffed animals, boppy pillows, and teething toys for newborns and toddlers,” says Ms. McCarey. “Oftentimes, the nurses will purchase these items out of their own pocket, but they shouldn’t have to do that,” she adds.
Tampa General, All Children’s Hospital, and St. Joseph’s Hospital are the recipients of the toy drive and are the home to hundreds of children and newborns who are born to substance-addicted mothers or have been physically abused. The fourth beneficiary of the Christmas in July Toy Drive is the Mary Lee’s House, the pediatric sexual assault investigation facility for Hillsborough County.
Mission Search stands strong with our local charity and nonprofit partners, in the quest to help the community of Tampa Bay when it’s needed most. To take part in this more-than-worthy cause, we urge you to make a donation or purchase a toy that will be used by children in need.