Twin Cities Salvation Army 'dangerously low' on toy donations

Thousands of children in need could go without presents this Christmas as the Twin Cities Salvation Army is seeing fewer toy donations this year.

“Right now, look at this, this space is empty,” said Captain Bersabe Vera. “Over there, we have more empty spaces and lines that we can fill up.”

At the Salvation Army warehouse in Roseville, concern is growing just weeks from the Christmas holiday.  

“We really need the support of the people and I know the need is great,” said Capt. Vera.

The non-profit is what it calls “dangerously low” on toy donations in the Twin Cities. The organization is hoping to serve 19,000 children, but at the current rate of donations, 4,000 kids may go without presents this year.

“I remember one time going to a house because the mom didn’t have time because she was sick, and I brought the toys to the house,” said Vera. “When I saw the faces of kids, jumping up saying, ‘Christmas is in the house,’ and to think that that joy is not going to be present - I don’t know. I’d be crying very hard.”

The Salvation Army says that they are most in need of toys for boys and girls between six and 10 years old.

Capt. Vera says that she isn’t sure what’s causing the shortage of toy donations, but what is clear—the need is growing.

“It seems like every year we find new families with new needs,” she said.

With the clock ticking, comes one last plea for help.

“Whenever you see anybody ringing the bell, help us,” she said. “And it will make possible, the toys that we need.”

You can help the Twin Cities Salvation Army provide toys for children in need by giving in any of the following ways:

•    Donate online. The Salvation Army will use your gift to buy toys.

•    Drop off new, unwrapped toys at The Salvation Army’s headquarters, 2445 Prior Ave. N., Roseville.

•    Buy toys online and have them shipped to The Salvation Army, 2445 Prior Ave. N., Roseville, MN 55113.

•    Drop off new, unwrapped toys at any of seven Salvation Army worship and service centers in the Twin Cities. Find your nearest location.