Saturday, December 12, 2009

A Trip to the City

Even though I live outside of the most hopping metropolis in the country, I rarely make a trip into city. Today, however, was different - today was my toy donation day for my somewhat-impromptu toy drive for Safe Horizon.

A couple of weeks ago, I posted a note on this blog asking for support in donating to Safe Horizon, a non-profit based in NYC that helps battered women and children escape violent homes. I found out that this charity was looking for toy donations for the kids on radio one morning as I was driving into the office.

That morning, I happened to be wearing my winter coat, a donation from a family friend, who realized that I wouldn’t have a coat this year, having left Brussels with my single suitcase in hand. I thought of how much that single gesture of generosity and kindness meant to me and knew that I needed to do something for these children.

I’m not saying this to pat myself on the back, but if you haven’t been involved a situation like this, it’s important that you know just how much a single item can mean. You leave with a suitcase, a backpack or nothing at all and you face rebuilding everything. As an adult it’s difficult. For a child or a parent wondering how to provide for a child, it must be absolutely devastating.

Originally, I planned on doing a “shop & drop” event with anyone who would want to buy for the kids and drop off a toy. As my colleagues and my employer stepped up to the plate with some very appreciated donations, I decided to just drop off a load of toys instead of pushing for a more social version of the event.

In the end, it was a great success. To everyone who supported this effort, THANK YOU - you know who you are and I could bear hug each and every one of you. Thanks to your help, several boxes full of toys, books, cosmetics and wrapping paper were dropped off at Safe Horizon this afternoon and a lot of children and teenagers will have a Christmas this year.

If you would like to make a donation to Safe Horizon and you live in the NYC metro area, there’s still time and there‘s still a need! Their toy drive closes December 15 and they‘re still short on donations for older children, ages 10-15. For more information on how and where to donate, check out the Safe Horizon website.


  1. What a beautiful and worthwhile idea! Happy Holidays and Happy SITS day!

  2. Coming over from SITS - like the blog! And I totally agree - one simple item can make the biggest difference in someone's life. Good for you. Especially relevant to read at Christmas time!

  3. Too many of us just think about helping. It's great to see someone taking action and organizing something.

    Shame on you for not going into that hopping metropolis more often - one of the most hopping in the world! - some of us would kill (well, not literally) for the opportunity to visit as easily as you can. :)