Around 13 years ago, current Chief of Police Mark Kohl started a Christmas crusade to collect toys for kids and then deliver them to families in a squad car.
At the time, Herb and Marisa Rycroft, the Shawano United Methodist Church and the Shawano Area Food Pantry and Resource Center collected the toys. Now toys are collected through the Toys for Tots campaign.
“Everything we get is funneled through them,” said Terry Moede, coordinator of the drive for the last three years. “All our donations stay here.”
The Toys for Tots program joins forces with the Shawano Police Department, SAFPARC and Safe Haven to ensure toys are provided for children from birth to 15 years old.
“There’s a lot of families where that’s the only gifts they get,” Moede said.
There are 65 collection boxes throughout Shawano County for new, unwrapped toys. For the last two years, the Shawano Area Young Professionals have distributed and picked up the boxes.