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CCM Toy Drive aims to make Christmas wishes come true

Every year, Cooperative Christian Ministry sets a goal to provide new toys for a minimum of 100 children in Middlesboro who might not otherwise get toys or gifts at Christmas. Clients of CCM and parents who are recommended, sign up at CCM to be added to the waiting list. CCM is collecting new toys through Dec. 12.

“We already have 75 families signed up and will likely reach 100 very soon,” said Eric Martin, CCM executive director. “The more toys we receive the more children we can benefit.”

In years past, CCM gave out pre-sorted bags of toys to families, but as of last year, Martin began a new tradition that’s goal is to help the families feel a part of the gift giving process. CCM volunteers and staff set out the toys on several tables and organize them by age. Then, they allow the parents or grandparents to pick out the toys they think their children would like to have.

“Letting parents pick out the toys for their children makes it feel more like Christmas. It gets the parents involved and gives them the opportunity to choose toys that they know their kids will enjoy,” said Martin. “The best part about Christmas is giving, and this is a way that families who might be struggling for one reason or another can experience the joy of giving.”

Also, CCM has partnered with businesses around the tri-state area to serve as drop-off locations for toys. While you are shopping this holiday season, consider picking up some extra toys and dropping them at one of the locations.

In Middlesboro, toys can be dropped off at CCM, Commercial Bank, Crater City Vendors, Family Discount Drugs, First State Bank (West End Branch), Hickman Building Supplies, Home Federal Bank, Mountain Tarp, Papa John’s Pizza and People’s Choice Pharmacy. Toys can also be dropped off at Sauce Craft Pizza or Walgreens in Pineville, or at the Gap Creek Coffeehouse in Cumberland Gap.

Some businesses like Blue Diamond and Smithfield are collecting toys internally to be donated to the drive. With your help, CCM can make Christmas dreams come true for several Middlesboro families.