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Tabernacle collects 350 toys

Emphris Simpson and Brenda Brown gather items to be given away in partnership with the Toys for Tots campaign. Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church donated 350 toys to the cause. -- Desiree taylor

For the holidays, many churches may offer a hot meal for the hungry or a clothing drive for the needy but Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church offered toys to those in need.

In partnership with Toys For Tots, the church gave away nearly 350 toys to families and children Monday during its first-ever Christmas toy drive.

Brenda Brown, who helped coordinate the event, said Tabernacle members, employed and retired teachers helped in the effort to ensure 50 local children had a Christmas. Brown said the group was able to give four to five toys per child away.

“We were very excited about this, we didn’t know what to expect,” Brown said smiling. “We asked some of the members of the church if they knew anyone who were needy. We have so many teachers that work within the schools; I’m very thankful and appreciative that we were able to help the community.”

Brown said the church received a great public response.

“Because of the economic conditions, people have lost jobs … people are very appreciative when you give them something … we had a table full of toys,” Brown said. “Thanks to our pastor Rodney T. Morton and first lady Rhonda Morton who were very instrumental in setting a good example of reaching out and giving back to the community.”

Brown’s assistants, Priscilla McMillian and Emphris Simpson were glad to volunteer their time Monday.

“It’s a good cause,” Simpson said. “It’s the idea of giving back to the community. I think a lot of children will have a happy Christmas.”

Brown, who said she wanted to keep the effort within the church, said the focus of Monday’s event was giving.

“We want the community to know we are about them and the needy,” Brown said. “We’ll be able to be blessed if we bless someone else as well.”

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