Cash Express and Clark County Fire Department team up to raise awareness for toy drive

Published 9:48 am Tuesday, December 5, 2023

The holidays are widely seen as a time for giving.

By working together, Cash Express and the Clark County Fire Department have dedicated themselves to taking action and bringing awareness to an opportunity for such.

On Dec. 1st, a Fill the Fire Truck event took place at the Cash Express location on W. Lexington Avenue to bring awareness to Clark County Fire Department’s annual toy drive, sponsored by the loan agency.

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“It’s been going on for [many] years now, and what we do is we collect toys and donations for needy families,” said Lt. Calvin Parker of the Clark County Fire Department. “We understand times are tough. Everybody’s gone through it. This is kind of our way of giving back to the community that’s so great to the department and so great to the guys.”

The toy drive, which began under the direction of current Clark County Fire Department Captain R.D. Brock, has occurred yearly since 2012.

Many selections have made up the list of toy items in previous years, including dolls, action figures, racing cars, letter boards, Play-Doh, children’s books and more.

New toys are traditionally preferable to pre-owned options.

“What happens is families call into the station, we take their information, [and] we try to get the toys and stuff out to those families,” Parker said. “It’s usually the week before Christmas [when we deliver].”

On Friday, along with bringing awareness of the upcoming toy drive, the Fill a Fire Truck event allowed others – including kids – to observe an on-site Clark County fire truck.

“That’s one of the best parts of the job is when families bring their kids in. They want to see the truck. They want to see what it’s like being a fireman,” Parker said. “We welcome that any time.”

Tabatha Drame, the manager at Cash Express, acknowledged that the company often looks to support such causes.

“We try to help as many kids…so they have a smile on their faces,” Drame said. “I just like to help people. It’s joyful.”

While the event offers positive publicity, it also yields strong results.

In 2022, approximately 600 kids were served.

Individuals can bring toys to Station 1 of the Clark County Fire Department at 200 Barnes Drive, less than one-half mile from Justice Elementary School.

“You can bring toys down there to drop off. If the guys aren’t there, you can leave them on the front porch,” Parker added. “When the guys return, they’ll see the toys, and we’ll put them up and store them until it’s time to ship them out.”

Asked what the most rewarding part of the experience was, Parker took little time to respond.

“Just seeing the kids and knowing they [are going] to have a good Christmas,” he said.