Christmas in September gives 100 families in North County free toys

ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) – A toy giveaway in northern St. Louis brought smiles to children’s faces on Saturday.

The Northern District Police Cooperative Cooperation with STL Youth Sports Outreach to organize the event “Christmas in September”.

Xaviera Stokes brings her three children to a toy giveaway in Vinita Park.

“As a single mother of three, it’s certainly more likely than not to go bankrupt when it comes to Christmas and gifts and toys,” she said.

Her kids have sports equipment, playing cards, stuffed animals, educational toys and more to play with.

“Sometimes it can feel like I’m not doing enough for them, but I’m limited in what I can do,” says Stokes. “Things like this definitely help. It makes them feel good and it makes me feel good.”

About 100 families received free toys on Saturday.

Scott Collett helps run the STL Youth Outreach program and says it helps kids get sports equipment that others can’t afford.

“I grew up in this community, so I know the people who live in this community and how hard the struggle is, especially today,” Collett said. “It’s a shame for a kid who can’t play sports or can’t have something just because of money circumstances.”

Corporal Corey Hawkins-Byrd of the North County Sheriff’s Cooperative says the goal of events like these is to give back to the community.

“It is also a way to build relationships with our youth and residents, so any opportunity we can to bridge the gap between the police and the community, we are for it, ‘ said Corporal Hawkins-Byrd.

Stokes says events like this show her that the community cares about the people who live there.

“It makes kids want to open up to them when they see these things and these types of people,” says Stokes. “It gives them a sense of security and a sense of loveliness, so it becomes easier to communicate with them.”

STL Youth Sports Outreach and North County Police Cooperative have more community events planned over the next few months.

The STL Youth Sports Outreach event can be found here.

The events of the North District Police Cooperative can be found here.

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