The season of giving is upon us and many local organizations are starting collection donations and toys to help those in need.
Thousands of East Texas children and senior citizens are depending on the kindness of strangers to have a few things under their tree this holiday and dozens of organizations are stepping up to make their wishes come true.
The Salvation Army angel trees are up at the Lufkin mall, Walmart and several other business. They're decorated with 1,100 names of children and senior citizens that need to be adopted.
"It has the children's clothing sizes and a need and a gift they would like to have," said Captain John Branscum with Salvation Army. "The giving of this program is 100 percent based on the public giving. We couldn't do it without them. Senior citizens they don't think about them but their income is very small and they like gifts as well."
And you can not miss the the toys for tots boxes that are virtually in every business in Nacogdoches and Angelina counties.
The bins are waiting to be filled with toys for more than 2,000 children and the list is still growing.
"You can fill out applications up through December 15th to receive help from Toys for Tots," said Brian Crews, Toys for Tots coordinator for Angelina and Trinity counties.
Cycle Heaven in partnership with Brothers Keeper church is collecting toys for their fifth annual Buckner foster care toy run.
"This is one day for that moment that we can help them have a great day and have a great Christmas and show them the love of Christ," said Scott Wilcox with Cycle Heaven. "
We're foster parents ourselves. We have adopted two children and it's so awesome to see how they're so happy and taken care of and we want the same for these children. You know they're in a foster care system where they are being adopted or soon to be adopted and they've been through a lot in their young lives and we want to take this one day to make it special."
Dozens of motorcyclists will ride and deliver the toys. You can also give your donated gifts to your Lufkin UPS driver, say they're for the Cycle Heaven toy run and they'll deliver them for you.
Impact Nac in Nacogdoches is also collecting donations to help nearly 200 children in foster care.
"They want to be normal. They want things just like everybody else does and we want to help do that and we need help to help do that," said Julia Jones with Impact Nac.
Impact Nac will have a party right before Christmas where Santa will give out the gifts.
Here's a list of organizations in Deep East Texas collecting items, donations, toys and money for the holidays. Plus, details on how to help:
Toys for Tots – Nacogdoches County
Contact: Ronnie Bowser, 936-554-8941, firstname.lastname@example.org
SFA Toys for Tots Football Game November 22 @ 2PM
SFA Toys for Tots Basketball Game December 2nd & 5th
Nacogdoches Walmart toy drive December 5-6 and 12-13
Rock for Kids at Macklemores December 13 with eight bands playing
Goal this year: 12,000 toys to serve 3,500 kids
Toys for Tots – Angelina & Trinity County
Contact: Brian Crews, 936-366-3013,
Find a list of all the bin locations here:
Benefit Concert at Walmart in Lufkin is scheduled all day December 12 -13.
Deadline to request help from Toys for Tots is December 15th. Form is here:
Family Crisis Center of East Texas – Adopt a Family
Contact: Susan Robertson, 936-639-1681,
Deadline: December 11.
Salvation Army Angel Trees
Contact: Captain John Branscum, 936-634-5132,
Lufkin tree locations: Lufkin Mall, Hobby Lobby, Outback Steakhouse, Walmart, Belk, Hobby Lobby, Kmart
Cycle Heaven/Brothers Keeper Church – 5th annual BBucknerFoster Care Toy Run
Contact: Scott Wilcox, 936-634-8404,
, List of children here:
Deadline: December 6. Motorcyclists meet at Cycle Heaven at 11 AM. Kickstands up at noon.
Contact: Julia Jones, 936- 205-5921 or 9003-780-7116, 801 E. Main Street, Nacogdoches
Trees located in Nacogdoches at: Cotton Patch, Chili's, Holiday Inn Express, Impact Store
Deadline: December 22.