WILLIAMSBURG, Ky. (LEX 18) — What started as a class project will now help many families across eastern Kentucky. University of Kentucky graduate students donated two SUV’s full of toys and books they raised for Toys for Tots in Williamsburg. Several months after the floods, they didn’t want people to forget about these families.
One of those students, Brinkley Berch, says, "So we decided that come December, when the project is due, we can remind people that these families still have nothing."
The other three students that came down were Maleah Abner, Lesley Kiesling, and Sam Grant. Toys for Tots Coordinator Catherine Sims says that she is impressed that these students wanted to give back in this way. She says when disasters like this hit, many forget about all that the children have lost — including toys that bring them joy.
Sims says, "If you’re giving them toys or books — because I do have a good selection of books out here — we give them books, we give them toys. Now, they have something to keep their mind occupied and they are so depressed about having lost all their toys."
There were more than 700 toys donated and even more books. The UK students say that several hours of work and planning went into making sure that these eastern Kentucky families have a good holiday.
Berch says, "I know I’m one, a person who doesn’t like help or like assistance, but in cases like this, you don’t have a choice, like it's gonna make somebody’s Christmas. You know, every child deserves a Christmas in some way shape, or form even if it’s not, you know, you’re traditional Christmas. This, I hope gives a piece of Christmas to everybody."
Sims says that donations in this area are critical. These UK students hope that this act reminds others to continue to give.
"Come support them in any way. I’m sure that they still need to have necessities donated, not just money. You know, money is great, but sometimes if you have the physical thing — that’s one less thing that they have to physically go buy,” says Berch.
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