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  Kicking Off the Food and Toy Drive

Nov 15, 2016 13:40 ET

Santa Claus paid a special early visit to Durham Region today to help kick-off the 28th annual DRPS Food and Toy Drive.

Students at St. Theresa Catholic School in Whitby hosted the event, which was MC'd by CTV News Anchor Ken Shaw. Donations filled the school's office to the brim and were all loaded in the trucks and taken to the Food and Toy Drive HQ at 5 Points Mall.

Chief Paul Martin and Chief-for-a-Day winner Ada Leahy thanked the students for their generosity and spoke about the importance of giving back to the community. And a special donation of $10,000 was given to the drive by the Clarington Bike Friendly Coalition.

The DRP musical band "The Heat" got the crowd excited by performing holiday songs as they eagerly awaited the guest of honour. Santa entered the gymnasium to the exuberant cheers and danced along with The Heat lead singer Cst. Scott Dargie.

The Food and Toy Drive began in 1989 and provides thousands of families in need in Durham Region with food and toys for the holiday season. Throughout the months of November and December local businesses, organizations and individuals donate food and toys, which are then picked up by volunteers, sorted and distributed to more than 100 community agencies.

Donations can be dropped off at any DRPS Division, Regional Headquarters, Food and Toy Drive HQ (5 Points Mall), the Pickering Police Credit Union or any Fire Station in Oshawa, Whitby, Clarington and Ajax.

A special thank you goes to the many volunteers who will help with the Food and Toy Drive this year. Last year 150 volunteers contributed more than 2,400 hours of work getting the donations to those in need.

The Food and Toy Driver organizers wish to thank these organizations for the generosity and support:

-Mills GMC and Buick
-Ontario Motor Sales
-Gus Brown GMC and Buick
-Fraser Ford
- Marigold Ford and Lincoln
- Durham Kia
- Mercedes Benz of Durham
- Menzies Chrysler
- Rio-Can Developments and 5pts Mall, Oshawa
- Swish Quality Cleaning Products
- Cardinal Boxes
-McDonalds Restaurants of Oshawa and Clarington
-Burger King Restaurants of Oshawa

We would also like to thank the many local businesses and fire halls that set up donation boxes for us every year.

Businesses or individuals wishing to make large donations can contact the organizers at or 905-721-2999.

Below are attached files.
Filling up the donations sleigh at the kick off (JPG file, 644.7K bytes)
Chief Martin Speaks to Students at the Kick Off (JPG file, 1,629.6K bytes)
Ken Shaw Hosted the Event (JPG file, 1,787.8K bytes)
A Special Donation (JPG file, 1,481.8K bytes)
Cst Dargie and The Heat Performed (JPG file, 3,039.8K bytes)
Chief Martin and Mini Chief Ada Celebrated at the Event (JPG file, 1,637.1K bytes)
Santa is in Sight (JPG file, 1,830.5K bytes)
The Kids were Excited to See the Jolly Man Himself (JPG file, 1,659.2K bytes)
Santa Enjoyed the Music (JPG file, 1,428.1K bytes)
Chief Martin Met Kids Who Made Donations (JPG file, 1,579.5K bytes)
Santa and Cst. Dargie (JPG file, 1,417.3K bytes)
Deputy Chief Ferdandes Spoke to Kids (JPG file, 1,424.6K bytes)
The Heat Performed Holidays Songs (JPG file, 1,653.6K bytes)
St Theresa Choir Performed as well (JPG file, 1,395.8K bytes)