A Boston holiday toy drive is looking for more donations of presents that will go to disadvantaged families in the region.
The Dorchester-based nonprofit Action for Boston Community Development, which collects and distributes the toy donations, says it's been about 3,000 toys short of what it normally has to hand out in the holiday season.
“The pandemic has hit a lot of families really hard, and I think that everybody’s still recuperating from that,” said Bianny Suncar, ABCD’s toy drive director.
On Monday afternoon, the Murphy family dropped off hundreds of toys to help end the critical shortage of donations less than two weeks before Christmas.
The Dorchester residents started donating toys 12 years ago, and it’s become an annual tradition. This year, they raised about $4,000 and used the money to purchase more than 400 toys.
“Some of these kids, they’re only getting these ... gifts for Christmas,” said Marc Murphy, who spearheaded his family’s efforts. “Since COVID came, it’s been really difficult, money-wise, for people.”
Tara Ciccia, of East Boston, turned to ABCD for help this Christmas after her hair and makeup business went under and her fiancée lost his job, leaving her fearing that she wouldn’t have any presents for her three young children.
“I never imagined myself in a position where I couldn’t work because of a pandemic,” she said. “Just knowing that the holidays will be a little bit better for them than it would have been helps more than anyone can really know.”