Toy Lift Charities believe that every child is entitled to a happy and enriched childhood. Our mission is to support local families through volunteerism, community cooperation, morale building, and educational tools. We seek to provide that support through all of our events throughout the year.
The purposes and objectives of the Charity are to:
- Provide toys and books to area children ages newborn through 8th grade
- Seek charitable contributions of money, toys, books and other needed items
- Seek volunteer assistance from the community
- Not interfere with any governmental or community agencies already assisting area children
Our service area includes the City of Charlottesville and the Counties of Albemarle, Buckingham, Fluvanna, Greene, Nelson, and Orange.
Why should I support Toy Lift and what makes Toy Lift Charities different? Toy Lift is entirely volunteer run. There is not one paid employee as part of Toy Lift Charities. We start with a volunteer board of seven people that work all year. We add another 10 volunteers who serve as coordinators from August through Toy Lift. Then we add hundreds of volunteers from the community during the event itself.
All our toys stay local. The families we serve come from Albemarle, Buckingham, Charlottesville, Fluvanna, Greene, and Nelson. The toys we collect from the Toy Lift event go directly back to those families. None of our toys are sent to Richmond, Lynchburg or other locations.
Our selection criterion allows us to identify families that might otherwise be missed. We do not use the financial documentation that other organizations do. Instead we require all our families to be sponsored by a school. We rely on the recommendation of a school counselor or social worker that a family is in need of support. This allows us to identify those families that may not already be part of “the system,” but may be experiencing circumstances that make this year particularly difficult.
For example, a family that has had a parental death this year and mom couldn’t even imagine trying to pull together Christmas might not meet any financial criteria, but the school personnel that know this family can identify them for us. They can also help us find those families who may have a very recent job loss, an accident or crisis such as a fire, or a sudden family burden.