Over the last 28 years, thousands of children in need in Scarborough received a special gift thanks to Auxiliary Officers.
“The Toronto Police Auxiliary alongside the Toronto Police Service and, with the support of local businesses and individuals who donate to the worthy cause, have helped countless children,” said Carrie Malin, who originally had the idea for the toy drive in 1994. Knowing that many families would be in shelters over the holidays they decided to ensure those kids got gifts.
“We have an amazing committee that, through their hard work and dedication, put in numerous hours every year to make sure this initiative continues,” said Mallin at a kick-off event for the toy drive.
Staff Superintendent Peter Moreira, who is in charge of the East Field Command, represented Chief James Ramer at the kickoff.
“This is an important initiative not just for Toronto Police, but the community,” he said. “Over 3,000 families will be impacted by the work that is led by the Auxiliary officers of 4 District. Most importantly, it gives us a connection to the people we serve everyday throughout the year.”
Auxiliary officers are uniform volunteers who perform a variety of crime prevention and community initiatives.
Superintendent Greg Watts, the 42 Division Unit Commander, thanked his officers for stepping up to the plate for the annual event.
“We do this to put smiles on the faces of children,” he said. “We have to remember that there are people in the community that do not have the means to have Christmas presents. We are here to make a difference, we are here to interact with our community in different ways. They should see the police in ways that are not just enforcement-related.”
Mayor John Tory, who is also a Toronto Police Services Board member, attended the kickoff.