Chaz and AJ Annual Christmas Toy Drive

On December 6th, Chaz and AJ from WPLR radio station hosted an annual toy drive at Jordan's Furniture in New Haven. Every year during the Christmas season, people from all over the states come together to help children in need of toys on Christmas day. Not every child is able to receive toys for Christmas so this was a perfect opportunity for Chaz and AJ to give back to their community. To take part in and attend this event, you must make one toy and/or monetary donation. This cheerful event started back in 1994 with Chaz and AJ asking for only one toy to receiving donations from people all over. Each year, both Chaz and AJ like to beat their previous toys and money collections in hoping to give to the children.

This year, the annual toy drive received a total amount of over 10,000 toys and $192,000 donations. One continuous donator, Angelo Appi Jr. said he donates to, “Help children that don’t have things we normally have. Some children come from broken families, some of them don’t have moms or dads and live in orphanages. I want to be able to help them have Christmas.” The Christmas season is all about giving and caring for others. When asking Chaz what motivated him and AJ to host this charitable event, he said, “I come from a background where I had a couple of Christmases where my parents didn’t have enough money to get me toys. The salvation army came to the rescue with some toys and I thought how cool is that. I was just a kid and I thought how cool is it that people I don’t even know helped me have a nice Christmas.”

For those who are looking for a way to donate, there are a few ways to donate throughout the year. There is an online cash button on the WPLR website where you can donate money, there is the Jordan’s furniture event and other various events. The five charitable institutions that helped with this event (according to Chaz) are The Boys and Girls Village (Milford), The Boys and Girls Club (Naugatuck Valley), Right way for kids (New Haven), YMCA (New Haven) and the McGivney Center (Bridgeport). Every donation is greatly appreciated and does not go unnoticed. Donator Rachel Jones was excited to contribute to this charitable cause because she believes that “Making a child happy on Christmas brightens my day. After all, Christmas is all about giving and this toy drive really helped me do my part in giving for others.” Rachel Jones later commented that she “Would come back next year” because of how “Cheerful and giving” everyone is. As you make a contribution to either your local toy drive or WPLR, let it be a helpful reminder to cherish and love your family and friends during this holiday season. Be sure to remember the true meaning of Christmas and have a happy holiday!