• Braintree comes together for toy drive to benefit hundreds of children

    By: Christine McCarthy


    The town of Braintree got together Thursday for a Christmas party that will benefit hundreds of children.

    The Braintree Police Department held a toy drive last weekend, with just about every other town department, schools, sports teams, companies and families also donating to make sure every kid in town has presents this holiday season.

    It was a special assignment for Braintree Police and Brewster Ambulance, as a convoy of public safety vehicles packed with toys arrived at Granite Grill Thursday night.

    Dozens carried in the Christmas gifts, all gathered for children in need.

    "It just shows how much people care," Chuck Kokoros, vice president of the town council and one of the organizers, said. 

    This year was the ninth annual Christmas party, with the community outdoing itself as they donated thousands of gifts to help hundreds of local families. 

    "Last year, we collected so many toys that every child that was given assistance, they were allowed to take home 8 toys," Braintree Councilor-at-large Sean Powers said. 

    For some, like Kokoros, there's also a personal reason for helping.

    "I understand firsthand what it’s like to be a kid in a situation where there might not be so many gifts available because of finances," Kokoros said. 

    The toys will be delivered to the Marge Crispin Social Services Center, where they will be sorted by age and gender.

    "The generosity in this town is overwhelming," Marta Googins, chair of the Marge Crispin Center, said. "It could make you cry."

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    But the best part is yet to come, when parents and guardians pick up the gifts, thankful for a little help from a lot of people that will make their kids light up this Christmas.

    "It's overwhelming to realize how many families that they're embarrassed by doing it," Googins said. "But when they come in and see everything for their children, you know you put that first."

    All the toys will be picked up by the Braintree Highway Department and brought to an undisclosed location.

    Then, on a designated day, parents and guardians can pick up the gifts to surprise their kids with. 

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