Virginia Community Stuffs the Ambulance

By KBJR News 1

November 30, 2013 Updated Dec 1, 2013 at 4:11 PM CST

Virginia, MN (NNCNOW.COM

The Christmas spirit is in the air and with all the excitement it can be easy to forget that some less fortunate children won't be getting anything for Christmas.

We got In Touch with how one Iron Range community is working hard to put a toy under every child's tree.

What do the Iron Range fire and police departments and McDonald's have in common?

All three want to make sure no Iron Range child goes without a toy on Christmas Day.

"Today we're doing stuff the ambulance for one of our range shelter's for kids and we're also donating to the Salvation Army."

Donators drove up to the ambulance, dropped off a toy or monetary gift and received a McDonald's coupon as a thank you.
Tressa Mattson, just a child herself braved the bitter cold to help her less fortunate peers.

"I'm collecting the toys and giving coupons."

Tressa worked alongside her father and Fire Chief Poffs to keep underprivileged children from having the same experience as Officer Hal Henning, co–creator of "Stuff the Ambulance."

"So one of our local officers from the police department was in and out of a shelter when he was growing up and he thought it would be a nice gesture if a child in a shelter could have a toy or something of their own," says Poffs.

Last year's event was so successful that this years the "Stuff the Ambulance" crew has received a 2 thousand dollar grant to take 20 kids on a 100 dollars Target shopping spree.

"It's a wonderful feeling to be involved in such a wonderful event, last year we had so many donations that came in...I hope we can match it this year," says Alicia Wolff, McDonald's manager.

And so far...so good.

"We've got hundreds of toys already and hundreds of dollars in donations monetary so we're doing very well," adds Poffs.

But the crew still needs more donations if they're going to reach every child.

Mattson sees it as a privilege.

"I get to give kids toys that don't have any."

Working to keep Christmas merry for everyone...

"Stuff the Ambulance" continues through December 1st.

Posted to the web by Gabrielle Ware
gware@kbjr.com