Employees of local video security systems manufacturer, Pelco, presented 141,934 Toys for Tots to the U.S. Marine Corps during a fun-filled ceremony today at the company's Clovis, California, headquarters. For the past four years, Pelco's donations - averaging over 115,000 toys each year - have been acclaimed by Toys for Tots National CEO, Lt. General Matthew Cooper (ret.), as being the largest made in the country and some of the largest ever in the program's fifty-year history. The festive occasion, which began with a parade and truckloads of toys, was attended by local dignitaries and press, numerous Marine Corps personnel, and over 1,300 cheering Pelco employees. This donation alone will allow the Marines meet their local area goal - ensuring that every identified needy child will receive at least one gift during the holidays. On behalf of the U.S. Marine Corps, Lieutenant Colonel Rosser O. Baker Jr. accepted this year's donation from Pelco.
Pelco President and CEO David L. McDonald stated, "This year's donation of 141,934 toys is an astonishing accomplishment - and a wonderful tribute to this great Pelco family. This is a year-round remarkable effort by hundreds of dedicated Pelco people. We believe that the children in our society are truly the innocent ones. And no matter their unfortunate circumstances, we cannot leave them behind. This is our way of reaching out and making a small, positive difference to tens of thousands of needy children - all at once. Without our employees' generosity, these children might have no Christmas at all. There can be no more worthy cause than this." The company matches one-for-one the number of toys donated by employees.
Pelco's history with Toys for Tots began in 1993 with a modest donation of 808 toys. Since then, it has grown steadily to where it is now the company's "flagship" charity. Pelco employees raise money throughout the year with dozens of activities such as raffles, bake sales, and solicitations from suppliers and customers. An annual Masquerade Ball has now become one of the newest, highly successful fundraising activities. There's even a payroll deduction available just for Toys for Tots. It is a massive, grass-roots effort supported by nearly all of the company's workforce of over 1,800 people.