Fresh Jersey Tomatoes (FJT’s), a group of women originally from New Jersey who now reside in Charlotte County, are holding their 3rd Annual FJT’s Toy Drive from now through Dec. 7, for underprivileged children, currently receiving services from Charlotte Behavioral Health Care (CBHC).
Holiday wrapped boxes will be located at some of your favorite local retail stores and restaurants, in addition to other Punta Gorda organizations. Donations of new/unwrapped toys for boys and girls, infants to 18-years-old would be greatly appreciated. Each participating partner will have a list of toy suggestions (by age group).
The most desperate need for gifts is those for boys and girls ages 13-18. Suggestions for girls include make-up kits, nail kits, art project kits, and small gift cards to WalMart or Target. Suggestions for boys include tools/tool kits, model cars/airplanes, sports supplies, and small gift cards to Walmart or Target.
“We are so excited about our 3rd annual Toy and Gift Drive. Our first year, the FJT’S raised 500 toys and last year we raised 700. Our sites are set on surpassing last year’s total. We hope while shopping for the holidays, you will make a donation to these children who face challenges on a daily basis. A small gift would bring great joy,” said Nanette Leonard/Founder, Fresh Jersey Tomatoes.
“The toy drive is being held in response to the urgent need of our struggling families,” said Kelly Pomerville, CBHC Director of Marketing and Public Relations. “Toy donations will alleviate pressure on families that would have had to choose between purchasing holiday gifts and necessary staples, such as food. We are so thankful that the FJT’s have stood up to shine some holiday spirit into these kids’ lives.”
Last year over 103 families and 175 children received the toys we collected. These toys alleviate pressure on families that would have had to choose between purchasing holiday gifts and necessary staples, such as food.” The drive also brought in “extra toys” that were donated to Golisano Children’s Hospital and Children’s Network of Southwest Florida. Children’s Network of SWFL is the non-profit administer of the child welfare system in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades Counties. Children’s Network is responsible for over 2,000 abused and neglected children, and delivers a comprehensive local system of care through subcontracts with more than 50 social service agencies (like CBHC).
Donation boxes will be placed at the following businesses:
Charlotte Behavioral Health Care
1700 Education Ave., Punta Gorda
103 W. Marion Ave., Punta Gorda
111 W. Marion Ave., Punta Gorda
3785 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte
1133 Bal Harbor Blvd., Punta Gorda
Northside Psychiatric Services
1032 Tamiami Trail Unit #7, Port Charlotte
941-639-8300 Ext. 2275
Punta Gorda Chamber of Commerce
252 W. Marion Ave.,Punta Gorda
Punta Gorda Fire Department (Station 1)
1410 Tamiami Trail, Punta Gorda
Punta Gorda Police Department
1410 Tamiami Trail, Punta Gorda
Nix & Associates
2421 Shreve St., Unit 111, Punta Gorda
1105 Taylor St., Punta Gorda
About Charlotte Behavioral Health Care
Operating for 49 years, Charlotte Behavioral Health Care is our area’s largest not-for-profit provider of community-based behavioral health care, offering a full range of mental health services and substance abuse treatment in Port Charlotte, Punta Gorda, Sarasota, DeSoto, North Port, and Lee County. More than 2,000 children and a total of 15,000 residents are treated annually. We deliver care that changes people’s lives. For more information, visit www.cbhcfl.org.