Easter magic awaits kids in women's shelters thanks to toy drive

Easter magic awaits kids in women's shelters thanks to toy drive

Kids living with their mothers in women’s shelters across Manitoba will have a magical Easter thanks to the scurrying efforts of a team of volunteers.

Tanya Pilat and her colleagues from Discovery Toys put together the Easter Baskets for Community Kids Donation Drive, which delivers Easter baskets to families living in shelters.

“I believe that every child deserves to have something special and magical at various times throughout the year,” the East St. Paul woman said in an interview on CBC’s Up to Speed.

“For children who are escaping abuse and negative situations, it’s really great for them to have a surprise waiting for them at Easter, just like any other child would.”

The baskets – which also double as sand pails – are stuffed with the normal Easter treats like toys and chocolate, as well as necessities like toiletries.

Last year, the group delivered more than 130 baskets. This year, they’re aiming to deliver more than 200 baskets, after adding Ronald McDonald House as a recipient.

The parents of the children are “overwhelmed” by the donations, said Pilat. This year, one of the people who donated told Pilat that she had once stayed at a women’s shelter for about a month, and knows how much it means to those who receive these donations.

“She said just having somebody think about her children at that time, when they’re really in a displaced situation. It’s really not normal for them and they’re struggling, and so for someone to think about their child at that moment is such a wonderful gift.”

The group is hoping to put together between 30 and 40 more baskets to reach their goal.

Published at Wed, 21 Mar 2018 09:16:36 -0400