FLORENCE, S.C. (WMBF) - Things were different this year for the annual holiday toy and clothing drive at the Florence City Center.
“Normally we have Santas all day sitting inside the building, but because of COVID-19 we couldn’t put people in the building,” said co-organizer and city councilwoman Pat Gibson-Hye Moore.
Instead, organizers had live Christmas music and put on their Santa hats as they held the toy drive outside of the city center building on Thursday.
Gibson-Hye Moore said the event began four years ago to benefit the Pee Dee CAP, Pee Dee Coalition and Courtney Graham Homeless Shelters.
The pandemic wasn’t going to stop this event from taking place.
“Parents are worried about how to make their children happy around Christmas time, and I would hate for a child to wake up on Christmas morning with nothing,” said Gibson-Hye Moore.
Thursday only marked the kickoff for the toy drive, so there’s still time to donate. Boxes will remain inside the city center building over the next two weeks.
Officials are asking for donations of toys, clothes, hygiene products or monetary donations.
“Whatever you can bring, bring it so we can make sure all of our children have a very, merry Christmas,” said Gibson-Hye Moore.
She also asks for people to lend a hand to help the homeless this holiday season.
“So please keep them in your hearts, even if you don’t donate here, help somebody,” said Gibson-Hye Moore.