Semi truck full of toys donated to families in need

Volunteers gather some of the 350 toys collected (

Toledo,OH. (WNWO)--

"We want to make sure the Christmas tradition is alive and well for kids even if they're homeless," said Renee Palacios Executive director of Family House nonprofit homeless shelter.

It's a gift that keeps on giving—generosity. Employees at the FCA US Toledo Machining Plant in Perrysburg have been extremely generous this year. They've collected enough toys to fill a semi trailer.

The toys are being gifted to Family House homeless shelter, which serves more than 30 families in need. Christmas lists are put together in November. Workers take care of the rest.

"Everyone starts to get excited especially as the gifts start coming in and we collect them. We have to find space to put them all," said Tim Walbot, President of UAW Local 1435.

Employees started the donations 15 years ago. They say it's become part of their own tradition.

"We even have a Christmas tree off to the side where if you participate you get to hang an ornament with your name on it," said Walbolt.

The toys and food collected will go to the families in need , but instead of standing in line on the holiday getting them, guests will be somewhere else.

"Most of our families are not here Christmas day because they're spending time with their friends and families just like any other family would," said Palacios.

Family house staff bags up the donations to hand them out Christmas Eve.

"We give the dignity of gift giving to the parents," said Palacios.

It took employees a month to collect the gifts and several people to get them into the building. A grand gesture, but one they say gives more than it receives.

"We work really hard to make a good product to serve the community and the company with good cars, but to have a share in something that we know directly especially brings children some smiles, people just love being a part of that," said Walbolt.

To donate to Family House you can head to their website.

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