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Above and Beyond: Texas Tech Community Supports Toys for Tots

This holiday season, several campus groups joined forces to help area children.

Written by Callie Jones

This morning (Dec. 25), many children who might not otherwise receive gifts played with new toys, thanks to the combined efforts of Texas Tech University and the U.S. Marine Corps’ Toys for Tots Foundation.

“Texas Tech proved once again its commitment to the community in helping more than 6,500 kids this year,” said Sgt. Michael Buikema, coordinator for the Lubbock area Marine Toys for Tots Foundation. “Without its support along with others in the community, we would never be able to accomplish our mission.”

Texas Tech is a longtime supporter of the Lubbock Toys for Tots initiative. This year, Texas Tech students, faculty and staff contributed in a variety of ways.

Several drop-off locations were in place around campus so that members of the Texas Tech community could donate new toys. Members of the Lady Raider basketball team volunteered their time by sorting through the toys at the Lubbock headquarters.

Texas Tech Transportation & Parking Services held the Toys for Tickets program, which encouraged individuals with an unpaid Texas Tech parking citation to bring a new, unwrapped toy of at least the value of the citation to the Transportation & Parking Services office to have one parking citation dismissed. Participants were able to bring several toys that added up to the value of their citation.

Grace Hernandez, chief of staff for the Office of the President and assistant vice president for administration, said that Texas Tech’s contributions to Toys for Tots reflect the university’s commitment to service.

“Texas Tech is committed to helping the Lubbock community, especially during the holiday season,” Hernandez said. “During this time of celebration, it is important to remember families and children who may not receive any gifts this year. This year Toys for Tots has included CASA of the South Plains in its cause of ensuring that some of those families will have a little more joy today, and Texas Tech is proud to support the Marine Corps in their mission.”

Jennie Hill, executive director for CASA of the South Plains, said that Texas Tech has been supportive of the organization for many years.
“Texas Tech’s involvement with CASA is a wonderful example of community partnership at its best. We are very grateful for all staff, faculty and student support of the CASA program.”

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