HARVEY | More than 160 families shopped for Christmas gifts for their children and grandchildren Dec. 14 at Restoration Ministries' annual Christmas Toy Store.
Every year, Restoration Ministries turns its gym into a Christmas Toy Store for families who would otherwise struggle to give their children Christmas presents. At the Toy Store, parents and grandparents bought new toys at reduced prices. Toys that normally cost $5 to $50 were priced between $1 and $5.
Schools, businesses, churches and individuals collected more than 2,300 toys. Volunteers helped tag the toys and set up the store. Volunteers also gift-wrapped all purchases, and students from Calvary Academy and Calvin Christian Schools in South Holland and Southwest Christian Oak Lawn Campus helped shoppers find the right toys for their children.
Restoration Ministries started the Christmas Toy Store to fulfill its mission of giving a hand up rather than a handout. Parents can shop for popular toys and select the exact toys their children have on their wish lists.
The Toy Store allows parents to maintain their dignity and gives them a sense of self-sufficiency. The Toy Store is for families who participate in Restoration Ministries' Food Pantry and after-school programs, residents of Harvey House and Tabitha House, its residential recovery programs, and other Harvey residents in need.
Restoration Ministries received donations of new toys from schools, churches, businesses and organizations including Calvary Academy, South Holland; Southwest Christian Schools, Oak Lawn and Tinley Park; Calvin Christian School, South Holland; Spirit of God Fellowship, South Holland; Trinity Christian College Nursing Student Organization and Community Partnership office; Illinois Nursing Association District 20; South Holland Fire Departments; Fountain of Life Church, Lombard; and Oak Lawn Toyota customers and employees.
The Christmas Toy Store is just one of the 26 programs Restoration Ministries offers to the residents of Harvey and surrounding communities. Founded in 1988, Restoration Ministries serves more than 3,000 people annually. Its mission is to restore hope to people and bring lasting change to the community.
For more information, call (708) 333-3370 or visit www.restorationministries.net.