United Way Distributes Thousands of Toys to Families in Partnership with Toys for Tots and DoorDash

Over 1,000 families in Westchester and Putnam received holiday gifts

UWWP Chief Impact Officer Faith Ann Butcher (center) delivered hundreds of toys to Pamela’s Big Heart Foundation in Yonkers, one of the nonprofits helping to distribute gifts to local families in need. Also pictured Maddie Cheatham, president of Pamela’s Big Heart Foundation (left), and Gigi Pagan, PBHF’s donation attendant (right)

United Way teamed up with Toys for Tots and local nonprofits throughout Westchester and Putnam to make sure thousands of children from low- to moderate- income families received toys this holiday season.

In Northern Westchester communities such as Peekskill and Ossining, and in all the communities in Putnam County, United Way of Westchester and Putnam partnered with Toys for Tots and DoorDash to distribute toys to children. Toys for Tots collected the toys through its local drives. United Way then identified families in need and organized to have the toys delivered to each family’s home through its Ride United program, which delivers food and other essential goods using DoorDash.

“This was a true community effort,’’ said Tom Gabriel, president and CEO of the United Way of Westchester and Putnam. “Thank you to Jonathan Schneider for leading the Toys for Tots efforts in Putnam and Northern Westchester, all the local businesses and police departments that held toy drives, and the local school districts and Putnam County Government for helping for connecting us with families and allowing us to distribute out of your buildings. A special thank you also to Bella Schneider for working so hard to help organize the toys. We brought a lot of joy to children and families on Christmas Day.’’

Mrs. K, a Carmel parent of five said, “Thank you all so much. My tree was empty. Now because of your services, I have something to give the kids. I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart,”

Addition to the toys gifted by Toys for Tots, United Way, through its Essential Goods for Basic Needs program, provided over $50,000 worth of toys to over 1,000 children in Yonkers, Mount Vernon, New Rochelle, White Plains, Port Chester, Elmsford, and Mamaroneck through its nonprofit and school district partners. These partners include 914 Cares, CHOICE of NY, Elmsford School District, Grace/ La Gracia Episcopal Church, The Michael Nolan Foundation, Mount Vernon School District, Neighbors for Refugees, Ossining School District, Pamela’s Big Heart Foundation, Peekskill School District, Port Chester Carver Center, Team Continuum, WestCOP, and Yonkers Council of PTA/PTSAs.

“United Way of Westchester and Putnam brought two truck loads of toys to our offices to give out to Yonkers children,” said Maddie Cheatham, president of Pamela’s Big Heart Foundation. “The United Way of Westchester and Putnam has given back to Yonkers residents in such a big way during the pandemic by giving blankets, slippers, brooms, clothing, and other necessities through Pamela’s Big Heart Foundation and again during Christmas with a huge donation of toys for Yonkers children. We are so grateful for our partnership.

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