SVA Gives Back by Hosting ‘Santa’s Toy Drive’

Shadia Judeh

November 15th, 2017

Santa Claus sits with one of his elves and two visitors (Mark Eades/Orange County Register/TNS)

SXU follows eight core values that serve as the university’s mission. SXU’s Student Veteran Alliance (SVA) has demonstrated the core value of compassion by announcing that they will be continuing with their annual holiday tradition of giving back.

This year, they will be hosting another Santa’s Toy Drive. Beginning Monday, November 27 , the SXU community can donate brand new and unused donations to the Chicago campus until Thursday, December 21. This will be the second year the organization hosts their charitable act.

“I started [the Santa’s Toy Drive] last year because I have noticed that Toy’s for Tots has grown into an amazing organization and has reached every corner of the continent.

The children in Christ’s Children Hospital [are] in our local neighborhood and don’t receive any toys. I have been in contact with a few administration staff over there and was informed that very [few] children receive toys for Christmas due to the strain, financially, on most parents and family members,” stated SVA President, Daniel  McLaughlin.

The SVA will be placing bins for students to drop off their donations throughout the campus. The bins will be located at the main entrance of the Warde Academic Center and the Shannon Center. Those interested can also drop off their donations at Gilhooley’s Grande Saloon and at Black Oak Tavern.

McLaughlin believes that the best part of the toy drive is, “knowing firsthand that these children will not go empty handed this year.”

On Sunday, December 24, around noon, McLaughlin will be joined by SVA’s Vice President, Conor McHale, and anyone else willing to help, to take the donations and hand deliver them to all the children at the Ronald McDonald House located at 4410 West 93rd Street, Oak Lawn.

“We are excited to stuff our packs with these gifts and march from Saint Xavier University all the way to the front doors of the Ronald McDonald House,” continued McLaughlin.

In the past, SVA has held collections for Toy’s for Tots. Since 1947, the U.S. Marine Corps annually collects toys at Christmas for less fortunate children in an effort to send them a message of hope that will help them grow into responsible, productive, and patriotic citizens.

The Toys for Tots toy drive at SXU began with John Kelly in 2012. Kelly is a Veteran Recruitment Specialist at SXU. The SVA has made their main focus helping, not only veterans, but also the surrounding community.

In keeping with SXU’s core values, McLaughlin wanted the SVA to offer even more to the community, “I have decided that our organization needs to have more of an impact in the surrounding community. What we have accomplished within this last year is truly amazing and our support keeps growing within the community.

We always strive to help anyone and everyone.”

McLaughlin continued, “The SVA is doing this because the smallest feature can have the greatest impact. We want the families and these children to know that we are here standing hand-in-hand with these children during their fight and road to recovery.” For more information contact Daniel McLaughlin@ McLauhlin.d01@mymail.sxu.edu.

Shadia Judeh

News Reporter

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