MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A group of Memphis organizations teamed up to put smiles on several kids faces this Christmas.
The organizers say they want to give back to a community that’s given so much to them. Filled with a trunk of new and gently used toys, a white truck is on it’s way to make a few special deliveries.
Sumo Tre with Fohshop, an organization that hosts events for local musicians, says this year they decided to give back. He says they hosted a socially distant benefit concert to raise toys for families in need.
From there, they teamed up with gun violence prevention activist Mary Trice with the Ride of Tears and Arize Independent Consultants to deliver the toys to 25 families in the Memphis-area.
“I felt this year since it’s been such a crappy time with people not being able to work and get out and stuff, why not take what I have and give back to others,” Tre said.
Trice added, “To wake up this morning and children don’t have any gifts and other children have gifts, we have to stop that we have to make sure that all the children have gifts. So no one is left out”
The mastermind behind the giveaway, JoJo Sigala, says giving back to underprivileged communities is personal. In November, she says one of the students she worked with at Humes Middle School was murdered in a drive-by shooting.
That student was 12-year-old Ta’shun Hardrick, only one of more than 30 kids violently killed in the city of Memphis this year.
“It’s really not the fault of the communities. It’s not like these communities are violent or inherently bad. It’s a lot of the systematic issues that have put people under that,” Sigala said.
Everyone we spoke to says by getting involved in these communities. They hope they can bring joy to those who have suffered and lost so much.
“As small or as big as you can give, no matter what you give to the community. If you could just put a little love out there, it will compound into an amazing thing,” Austin Hamilton, a musician who donated music, said.
Organizers say they were able to give away more than 300 toys.
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