On Your Side: Toy Donation Troubles

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News 12 at 6, November 19, 2007

All those toy recalls you've been hearing about for months now are creating some extra work for people working on toy drives this holiday season.

If you're buying your child a toy and you want to make sure it hasn't been recalled, it can be a hassle of sorts to check to make sure it's safe. You've got to look it up and check the numbers. Now, imagine having to do that sort of checking on thousands upon thousands of toys.

That's just what organizations like the Salvation Army have to do this year.

The Salvation Army relies on the good will of people like Paul Owens. "I know it will benefit somebody," he said.

Paul and scores of other people donate to places like the Salvation Army to help the less fortunate.

But lately, workers have had to keep a closer eye on what's being donated.

One of the biggest drives the Salvation Army holds every year is its toy drive. It's a drive that provides the only Christmas thousands of Augusta area children know each December.

But with millions of toys being recalled this year because of all sorts of safety hazards, Salvation Army workers have to be a lot more careful examining the generosity of others.

That means workers literally have to get familiar with many of the recalled toys to be able to check every toy that comes in, to make sure your child won't get hurt playing with it.

It's all the things that come in bags and boxes from you home that will make for some long hours this holiday season for Salvation Army volunteers.

"It will be. We just hope people will be nice and not donate those products," said Salvation Army's Laurie Harmon.

A little prep-work on your time can help out a lot and could keep a recalled toy from getting in the hands of an innocent child.

"We just want to protect the children," Laurie added.

Of course, toys are not the only things provided by the Salvation Army for the less fortunate. Food, clothes and other necessities are also given out to those who need them.

If you want to donate toys or anything else to the Salvation Army, just head over to the main building, located at 1384 Greene Street in Augusta.

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