100 Black Men Christmas toy drive

Published 3:26 am Tuesday, December 19, 2023

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In the spirit of giving and community, the 100 Black Men of Selma hosted their inaugural Christmas Party and toy drive on Dec. 14 at Arts Revive, making a significant impact on the lives of local youth.

Amid the festive atmosphere, Marquies Neely, a member of the organization, shared his enthusiasm for the event. 

“Here tonight, the brothers of 100 Black Men of Selma, part of a larger group called 100 Black Men of America, gather for our first annual Christmas party,” Neely said. “We started out just giving toys, but we wanted to make it a community event so that people could join in and bring toys.”

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Neely emphasized the importance of community involvement, explaining that the toys collected would go to children who have lost parents, those less fortunate, and community children eagerly anticipating the joys of the holiday season.

“We hope that we have a big turnout tonight, and that this is an event that’s going to continue every year,” Neely said. 

The organization’s commitment to being positive role models for young men was reiterated by Neely. Their motto, “What they see is what they’ll be,” guides their efforts to prepare young men for success. Monthly forums at local school’s cover topics ranging from education and economic empowerment to health and wellness.

Senator Robert Stewart, reflecting on the first holiday season after a devastating tornado, expressed the group’s desire to spread yuletide joy, camaraderie, peace, and dedication to the community. 

“This is our inaugural Christmas party for 100 Black Men of Selma,” Stewart said. “We want to imbue our community with a spirit of service and dedication, ensuring that all children have access to Christmas joy regardless of their economic situation.”

The collected toys will be distributed at the annual toy jubilee hosted by group President, Councilman Warren Bill Young. 

William Powell, a member attending the event, lauded the collaborative effort involved to bring Christmas to those in need. 

“It’s always an honor and a blessing to give back, and I’m just so proud of the organization and all the community members that came together to bring toys for all the boys and girls.”