The annual Giving of the Toys event may have looked a little different this year, but that didn’t stop SUNY Broome and Broome County Toys for Tots from spreading some holiday cheer to local families.
For more than 20 years, Giving of the Toys has been a campus highlight for the holiday season. Over 60 offices, departments, clubs, athletic teams, and organizations bring their gifts and donations to the event held on campus; the toys are then delivered to the Broome County Toys for Tots drive organized by local law enforcement.
Usually held in the Baldwin gym on campus, this year’s Giving of the Toys was held as a drive-through drop-off station in the Student Village parking lot, where campus community members dropped their donations off to Santa while safely social distancing.
“Giving of the Toys has been a long-standing tradition at SUNY Broome,” said Sandy Stephens, Secretary to the Dean of Students and co-organizer of the event.” It brings our entire campus community together, including students, staff, faculty, and administrators. Supporting our local community is a high priority for us, as we have always been the community’s college.”
Special Events Coordinator Justine Dadamio says,” During this challenging time of distancing and separation, we are glad we could come together in a new, socially distanced and safe way to celebrate the holiday season and bring joy and hope to others.”
Local law enforcement and SUNY Broome Public Safety were also on hand to greet community members and receive donations. Broome County Toys for Toys Director Chris Marshall thanked SUNY Broome for hosting the event. “Without the donations, both monetary and toy items, none of this would be possible,” he explained. “The SUNY Broome event is a huge event. It gets the students involved and the community involved; it’s a fun event. This year it’s a little different, but I think it’s going to help a lot of families.”
“I think this is a great event that SUNY Broome does, ” said Dominick Matarese, a Communications & Media Arts student. “They get a lot of toys. I know the local police departments get involved, all the clubs get involved. There are a lot of students who come out to make something good happen for the community.”
Thank you to everyone who helped make this event happen and to those who were able to participate. We wish you the Happiest of Holidays!
Watch this year’s Giving of the Toys Holiday video!