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Polk Toys for Tots Campaign Recognizes 2020 Challenge Winners

Campaign Distributes More Than 57,000 Toys to nearly 15,000 Children

The 2020 Polk County Toys for Tots Campaign distributed 57,716 toys to 14,761 underprivileged children. In addition to various drop box sites throughout the county, several organizations conducted drives and competed with other organizations in toy drive challenges.

The office of State Attorney Brian Haas was the winner of the 2020 Toys for Tots Government Agency Challenge.

In addition to the State Attorney's office, the Public Defender's Office, Tax Collector's Office, Property Appraiser's Office and the Clerk of The Courts Office participated in the challenge this year by bringing in new unwrapped toys to donate to the Toys for Tots campaign.

Previous winners of the challenge have been the Office of State Attorney (2017,) Office of Tax Collector (2018,) and Property Appraiser Office (2019.)

For the second year in a row, the "Battery Bucket Challenge" was won by the Florida Presbyterian Homes in Lakeland. The residents raised exactly 1,000 batteries. In total, 12 different groups participated in the challenge this year, raising a total of 3,150 batteries for the campaign. This saved the Campaign hundreds of dollars, which were used on toy purchases.

The Polk County High School Challenge was won by Lake Region High School. Mulberry High School had been the defending champion for the past three years. Lake Region High School, under the direction of Sergeant Major Doyle Braddy and Captain Jose Quezada, raised over 347 toys, including 64 bicycles.

The mission of the United States Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Campaign is to provide a new, unwrapped toy to underprivileged children at Christmas and a message of hope that will assist them in becoming responsible, productive, patriotic citizens. The 2020 Polk County Toys for Tots Campaign resulted in 57,716 toys being provided to 14,761 underprivileged children in Polk County. The success of the campaign is the result of the dedication and hard work of the volunteers who devoted hundreds of hours to Toys for Tots in the warehouse or as collection and delivery drivers. Together with Polk County businesses and citizens who generously gave financial support, this year's campaign, even in this most challenging pandemic year, was the most successful. A sincere thank you to everyone involved in ensuring Polk County children had at least one requested toy to open on Christmas morning.

For questions or if you would like to volunteer for the 2021 Campaign, please contact David Waller, Coordinator of the Polk County Toys for Tots Campaign at 863-529-3709.


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