Brooklyn AHEPA Chapter 41 President John Liodakis and Toy Drive Committee Chairman Nicholas Chamberas with workers from The Guild for Exceptional Children Pre-School as well as Santa and the children with their new toys. (Photo: Courtesy of AHEPA)
BROOKLYN, NY – Brooklyn AHEPA Chapter 41 held a Christmas Toy Drive for the first time this year to benefit underprivileged children. The chapter collected a lot of toys and thanked all those who contributed. The first donation drop-off on December 22 was to The Guild for Exceptional Children Pre-School. The children, ages 3-5 years old, presented a short Christmas Pageant, then met Santa and picked out a toy.
The chapter’s second donation on December 23 was to the NYPD. Officers from the 77th Precinct came to pick up the toys from Holy Cross. They have a program that distributes toys to children in shelters as well as those children whose families have been victims of horrific crimes.
The third donation also on December 23 was to The Domestic Violence Assistance Center. The chapter said in a statement via email: “We listened to the women describe the children who come there – they literally have nothing, sometimes not even shoes, or a change of clothes. They told us that the gifts we donated would not just be appreciated, but absolutely adored.”
Their final donation on Christmas Eve was to St. Michael’s Home in Yonkers. Chapter Vice President Nick Sekas and his wife Athina Sekas brought baked goods to the residents, supplied by Bay Ridge Bakery on behalf of the chapter.
“All the organizations thanked us repeatedly and stressed how much they appreciated our efforts,” the chapter statement continued. “They also commented that the quality of toys and baked goods was exceptional. Any other toys that are left will be donated to the Healing Center of Bay Ridge, which also helps victims of domestic violence.”
The chapter plans on making these donations a yearly tradition and asks anyone who has any suggestions for worthy organizations for future donations to please contact them, via email: [email protected].
The Chapter thanked Brother Nicholas Chamberas for all his hard work in organizing the toy drive. “He has done a great job of spearheading this effort,” the chapter said.
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