ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The Boys & Girls Clubs of Rochester is accepting toy donations for this year’s Club Christmas Celebration.
The event is set for Saturday, December 12 at 11 a.m. at the Boys & Girls Club location on Genesee Street in Rochester.
Executive Director Dwayne Mahoney discussed the event and the decision to hold it despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic Wednesday during News 8 at Noon.
“We still felt like it’s a necessary thing to have, especially with COVID and the situation here in Rochester,” said Mahoney. “We still think kids should be enjoying Christmas and at least making sure that kids get gifts this year that attend the Boys & Girls Club. We’re going to be doing it a little differently by having the event not indoors, but having it out in front of the building. We’re also spending a lot more time decorating the outside of the building.”
Mahoney thanked O’Connell Electric, which will be assisting with those outside decorations.
Donations from the community are needed to ensure every child receives a gift at the Club Christmas Celebration. “Every year we’re collecting gifts, so we have boxes in different places all around Rochester,” Mahoney explained. “AT&T stores have gift boxes. There are a number of different companies where the employees are dropping gifts into boxes around the City. We also have the ability for people to go to Amazon.com and we have a ‘Wish List’ up there as well. The event really comes down to the donation of toys which we then give out to kids.”
To select a toy off the Clubs’ Amazon ‘Wish List’ visit BGCRochester.org.
Mahoney believes that now, more than ever, the community needs events like the Club Christmas Celebration. “Every night the lead on the news unfortunately always has to be – and rightly so – about the increases in terms of the virus, which is not always the most uplifting news. We feel the Christmas spirit is still alive and well. Anything that we can do to bring that to our parents and our kids I think is important – not only for the Boys & Girls Club, but for others too. I think it’s really needed, especially in this time that we’re all going through.”