Stuff the Gazebo Toy Drive Brings Joy and Hope to Abused Children


MONROE, CT – Christmas is a magical time of year for children, but many young victims of domestic and sexual violence, or children who live with a single parent who has escaped an abuser, may not feel the same joy during the holidays or having toys under a tree this year.

Monroe Police Officers are hosting the first annual Stuff the Gazebo Toy Drive to brighten up the holiday spirit this year. Donations will be deposited at the Center for Family Justice, for the benefit of children living in its safe house for domestic violence and those in the community whose families have been victims of domestic and sexual violence.

“This is something that concerns us,” said Monroe Police Lt. Stephen Corrone. “We want to offer this to the victims. This is near and dear to us as we deal with them throughout the process. “

On December 11, police will accept new unwrapped toys for children at the kiosk on the putting green at 7 Fan Hill Road from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The collection is intended for children aged 1 to 18. Some donations sought by the police include superhero figures, LOL dolls, anything with dinosaurs, Barbies, Cabbage Patch Kids, and gift cards, especially for older children.

“We’re trying to do our best for them, so we would appreciate it if the community would come forward and support this,” Corrone said.

“No child should be without it”

Debra A. Greenwood, president and CEO of the Center for Family Justice, said the nonprofit provides holiday gifts to more than 200 children, parents and caregivers affected by domestic or sexual abuse.

“For many of our customers, these gifts are the only way to give their children a fulfilling vacation,” said Greenwood, “due to the abuse they have suffered, many of them are struggling. financial extremes. They struggle to make ends meet as they struggle to rebuild their lives from the abuse. “

“If they didn’t receive the gifts from these toy drives and our generous donors, many of them wouldn’t have their holiday wishes come true,” she added. “No child should be without it at this magical time of year.”

Every day, police are the first line of safety and protection for victims of domestic and sexual abuse, according to Greenwood.

“This reader is just another example of how the Monroe Police Department supports victims of abuse,” she said of Stuff the Gazebo. “It is truly inspiring for all of us at CFJ to see the Monroe Police engage in this effort on our behalf. Every year Monroe agents go out of their way to make sure our child clients have the kind of vacation every child deserves and we are so grateful.

Greenwood said the Monroe Police Department holds one of the largest and most successful toy drives for CFJ, adding that the children they serve also benefit from donations from community and civic groups and businesses.

“It’s amazing how much the community is supporting this effort and we love to see the enthusiasm and dedication of the agents doing it on their behalf,” said Greenwood.

In addition to toys, she said, CFJ is always grateful to receive gift cards of $ 25 or less at stores such as Target, Stop & Shop, and Walmart.

“These types of gift cards help our customers make personal choices during the holidays for their children and their family’s most immediate needs,” said Greenwood.

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