While most people think about Toys for Tots only around Christmas time, here at HealthMarkets we start a little earlier than that!
HealthMarkets support of the DFW Toys for Tots program began in 1986 probably the way most company programs do – employees pitching in donations as the holidays approach. However over the next 20+ years our employees have really taken this cause to heart and support of the program has grown into a year-round event!
Recently we held our HealthMarkets 2015 Toys for Tots program kick-off event with a wonderful presentation by Major General Gossell USMC (RET), who brought a couple of members of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve with him in their dress uniforms. It was quite a sight!
It was also great to hear firsthand how much impact our program has on the families and children in need in our community. Especially touching was the story Major General Gossell told us about a little girl who donates her birthday presents every year to the Toys for Tots program and how much this program has touched his life. It was very inspiring and motivating to hear him talk about the Toys for Tots program – and what HealthMarkets support over the years has meant to it – on such a personal level.
And, although this was our official kick-off for our 2015 Toys for Tots program, our fundraising activities are already well underway. Our first event this year was an Easter Egg Hunt on March 28 for the HealthMarkets families. The Toys for Tots Easter Egg Hunt is an annual tradition here at HealthMarkets. Not only is it a fun way to raise money for Toys for Tots, it’s also a great chance to hang out with co-workers with their families outside of the office. It’s amazing seeing how much the kids have grown each year!
In addition to events that are held throughout the year, we also raise money for the program by selling popcorn and welcoming a variety of vendors to our building in North Richland Hills with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Toys for Tots program. And next month, we will be holding a “Pages for Pennies” used book sale benefiting the Toys for Tots program.
This year is an especially exciting year for the HealthMarkets Toys for Tots program. We learned at our kick-off event that employees now have the opportunity to contribute to this program through payroll deduction and the company will match employee contributions!
It’s exciting to see the HealthMarkets Toys for Tots program grow each year. It’s a great feeling to know that the efforts of HealthMarkets and our employees support not only the Marine’s efforts, but also the community and those children in need each holiday season and beyond.