NEW YORK and ATLANTA, June 29, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- In recognition of the Year of the Coast Guard Family, representatives from the Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) and Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) distributed new toys and games to 250 children stationed at the Massachusetts Military Reservation, Cape Cod, MA and surrounding military installations. Captain Throop, Commanding Officer of Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod was on hand to accept the toys on behalf of the Coast Guard, National Guard, Army and Air Force communities. Ervin Russell from Congressman Barney Frank's office and local toy industry companies were on hand to help distribute the toys.
As part of President Barack Obama's initiative to ensure America's military and family members have the resources they need to be their best, 2011 has been declared the Year of the Coast Guard Family. To celebrate, toys will be distributed through the TIF-BGCA Play Comforts partnership to the Massachusetts Military Reservation and additional Coast Guard bases located in Kodiak, AK; Borinquen, Puerto Rico; and Petaluma, CA.
"It is truly wonderful what the Toy Industry Foundation and Boys and Girls Club are doing for military families," said Chrissy Burns, wife of Coast Guard member Ryan Burns. "Sometimes my husband is gone for several weeks at a time and the kids get anxious. Being able to choose a brand new toy today not only gave them something to look forward to, but also provided a welcome distraction from their worries."
Play Comforts is the first-ever national toy distribution program to serve every branch of the military. In 2011, thirty (30) U.S. military installations with high deployment rates will receive toys throughout the U.S. and in Germany. Toys are distributed through the Foundation's Toy Bank, which receives $5 million worth of donations from toy manufacturers, retailers and distributors each year. The Toy Bank is the Foundation's signature program and also gives toys to children living in poverty, suffering from chronic illnesses, rescued from crisis situations and affected by natural disasters.
"Military families sacrifice so much to ensure the U.S. is a safe place for all of us," said TIF Executive Director Jean Butler. "The Toy Industry Foundation is committed to providing toys to the children of these families in order to help alleviate the stress and anxiety of having a loved one far from home."
"In 2011, Boys & Girls Clubs of America will celebrate the second year of our partnership with the Toy Industry Foundation," said Terrill D. Wicks, VP Military Services & International Projects. "Play Comforts is a great opportunity for both BGCA and the TIF to show our support for the unselfish sacrifice made by our military personnel and their families. We commend the TIF for their commitment to our military families and are grateful for their unwavering support."
About the Toy Industry Foundation (TIF)
The Toy Industry Foundation (www.toyindustryfoundation.org) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to bring joy, comfort, and learning to children in need through toys and play. While other organizations provide food, shelter and support services to children and their families, TIF sees to it that these children have toys and opportunities to play in an attempt to restore both fun and a sense of normalcy to their lives. The Foundation currently fulfills its mission through core programs including The Toy Bank™ and grants to organizations whose missions are in line with that of the TIF.
About Boys & Girls Club of America (BGCA)
For more than 100 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (www.bgca.org) has helped kids "Be Great," providing hope and opportunity for those who need it most. Today, more than 3,900 Clubs serve some 4.1 million young people through Club membership and community outreach. Known as The Positive Place for Kids, Boys & Girls Clubs can be found throughout the country and on U.S. military bases worldwide, providing young people 6-18 years old with guidance-oriented character development programs conducted by trained, professional staff. Clubs positively impact lives and help young people reach their full potential as productive, caring citizens. In a recent Harris Survey of Club alumni, 57 percent said the Club saved their lives. National headquarters are located in Atlanta.
SOURCE Toy Industry Foundation (TIF)