Nearly 4,500 toys, made by local woodcarvers, go to children in the Black Hills region
RAPID CITY, S.D. — Robert “Bob” Buchanan says the reason he gifted children at Youth and Family Services with toys, Tuesday, is because of something he learned from beloved Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer.
“There’s a book called Rudolph, the Red- Nosed Reindeer,” says Buchanan, President of the Rapid City Woodworking Association.”And in that book he says a toy never feels loved until its been given a home by a child so that’s what we’re doing today.”
It’s true. On the island of misfit toys – for those who’ve seen the film – the toys all sing about not wanting to be on the island, but rather, loved by a child come Christmas Day.
In this case, they aren’t misfit toys. Each toy is made with love and care by the 40 active members of the RCWA. Every year, for 12 years, the group has built and delivered toys to organizations like YFS who are able to gift them to children.
The toymakers have been working all year to be able to deliver toys to over 20 locations in the Black Hills region. This year, the group completed 4,427 handcrafted toys.
Some children at Youth and Family Services may only be receiving this one toy for Christmas this year.
“You know, a lot of these kids, this is the only gift they’ll get or see over the holiday season,” says Chris Blair, Philanthropy and Special Events Coordinator for YFS. “And to being able to share this moment with the kids, it’s just wonderful. It takes you back to your childhood. You’re able to get down on the floor and play with these kids. It’s just a wonderful day.”
Toymaking for 2019 has ended. Anyone who is interested in helping next year is encouraged to visit the organizations website. They are always accepting donations of surplus wood or money for operating expenses.