Toys for Tots Charlotte short on donations for families in need

CHARLOTTE — The Charlotte chapter of Toys for Tots says it needs thousands of more toys to meet the increased requests from neighbors in need.

So, the group is making last-minute changes to help families.

“The children, when they receive these toys, it’s a huge spiritual -- uplifting for them,” said Staff Sgt. Logan Myers, Toys for Tots coordinator. “It’s changed a lot of people’s lives.”

Myers and fellow U.S. Marines hope to spread Christmas cheer when they distribute toys throughout Charlotte.

“We definitely need about three times as many (donations) as we have right now,” Myers said. “We have a lot of empty boxes in the warehouse right now.”

Myers said families and nonprofits requested 8,000 toys from Toys for Tots Charlotte, which is 1,000 more requests than last year.

There are currently only 3,000 toys in the group’s north Charlotte warehouse.

“It seems like everyone is last minute this year as far as Christmas shopping goes,” he said. “It could be the economy. We really don’t know.”

Bryan Barley understands the group’s urgent need for donations.

He and his co-workers at Martin Marietta dropped off about 400 toys at the warehouse.

“I think for kids all over the Charlotte area -- I know it’s tough for a lot of families -- and it’s really important that these kids have something special,” said Barley, sales representative at Martin Marietta.

That’s the reason why Toys for Tots is pushing back its deadline to donate toys from Friday to Wednesday.

Myers hopes that pushes more people to help those in need.

“The gift of giving is just as great as receiving,” Myers said.

VIDEO: Toys for Tots Charlotte to deliver donations despite major roadblocks