Kindhearted East Enders love to give, especially during the holiday season, and thanks to efforts put forth by three local organizations, it couldn’t be easier to do your part for the less fortunate in our communities. Whether it’s a warm coat, something to eat, or a toy to help brighten a child’s Christmas morning, this trio of drives are gathering a variety of goods to make a difference in the lives of the Hamptons residents who could use the help.
East Hampton Kiwanis Toy Drive
The East Hampton Kiwanis Club, part of an international network of service clubs, is collecting new, unwrapped toys to help kids in need have a happier Christmas this year. Running through Tuesday, December 21, this 35th annual Toys for Tots toy drive has extra importance due to the many families facing hardships due to loss of work, and even deaths of loved ones, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Donations can be dropped off at multiple locations around East Hampton Town, including supportive businesses and venues in Montauk, Amagansett, Springs, Wainscott and East Hampton Village. Toys may be delivered to: East Hampton Middle School (76 Newtown Lane), the offices of Corcoran (51 Main Street) and Brown Harris Stevens (27 Main Street), Village Hardware (32 Newtown Lane) and One Stop Market (299 Springs Fireplace Road) in East Hampton; The Clubhouse and East Hampton Indoor Tennis (174 Daniels Hole Road) in Wainscott; Springs Pizza (841 Springs Fireplace Road) and the Springs General Store (29 Old Stone Highway) in Springs; Brent’s General Store (8 Montauk Highway) in Amagansett; and M&R Deli (728 Montauk Highway) and Herb’s Market (778 Montauk Highway) in Montauk.
Financial support, which will go toward the purchase of toys, may be dropped off at locations or sent to Kiwanis Club of East Hampton, P.O. Box 1902 East Hampton, NY 11937.
Sag Harbor Kids Need Warmth Coat Drive
Launched in 2014 and last held in 2015, this special coat drive created by two Sag Harbor Elementary School students, Marina and Nola Hollyer — who are now students at Pierson High School — is back. And so is the eye-catching Buddy the Cuddle Monster donation box, which is now at the school and ready to eat up coats and jackets through his perfectly sized mouth. A sign on Buddy’s furry blue body reads: “Hi! I’m Buddy and I’m hungry for your clean and gently used coats and jackets to benefit kids at The Retreat. Share the love.”
All donated coats will be given to children at The Retreat, an East Hampton-based shelter for women escaping domestic abuse situations in the community. You can find Buddy at the Sag Harbor Elementary School, 68 Hampton Street, Sag Harbor.
Boy Scout Troop 483 Drive Thru Canned Food Drive
Led by the Boy Scouts in Hampton Bays Troop 483 on Saturday, December 18 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., this special one-day food drive offers a safe, socially distant way to support the St. Rosalie’s Church Food Pantry in Hampton Bays. The Scouts are asking community members to deliver non-perishable food donations to the Hampton Bays United Methodist Church parking lot at 158 Montauk Highway in Hampton Bays.
“Simply pop your trunk or open the rear hatch and the Scouts will gladly unload your grocery donation without you even having to get out of your car,” they say, pointing out that St. Rosalie’s Food Pantry serves as a central location for food distribution to the needy. It is supported by all the area churches because of St. Rosalie’s function as a hub for local charitable giving. Annual donations from food drives like this help St. Rosalie’s feed some 1,400 local families during the holidays. Saturday will mark the Scouts’ fifth Drive-Thru Food Drive in 2021, and right now the need is great.