Massachusetts State Police today launched their annual effort to boost the US Marine Corps’ “Toys for Tots’’ drive, a program that gives gifts to children of families in need during the holiday season.
For the past 28 years, State Police have assisted the Marine Corps with the drive, which has been running nationally since 1947. New, unwrapped, non-violent toys can be dropped off at any State Police barracks through Dec. 17, State Police spokesman David Procopio said.
“Due to the economic hardships that many of our state’s residents continue to struggle with, the need for toys has increased over the past several years,’’ Colonel Timothy Alben, head of the State Police, said at the event, according to a spokesman. “Our ability to help them, to ensure that every child in need has a toy in this season of giving, is dependent on the generous donations of our citizens. So we ask those who can afford to do so to help us again make this year’s campaign a success.’’
State Police’s third annual “Fill the Cruiser Day’’ will be held Saturday. Those who wish to donate can buy a toy and place it in the cruiser as they leave participating stores. A trooper and cruiser will be at eight Toys “R’’ Us locations around the state from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Participating locations are in Woburn, Dedham, Framingham, Dartmouth, North Attleborough, Springfield, Auburn, and Kingston.