With December in full swing, it’s the perfect time for the residents of the Coastal Bend join together to assist those less fortunate. In the spirit of the holidays, I wanted to take this opportunity to bring attention to certain efforts in our area that will benefit many families this holiday season.

Toys for Tots is a nationwide campaign and has very strong roots and participation in Corpus Christi, Port Aransas and the Coastal Bend area. The initiative began in 1947, when Marine Major Bill Hendricks collected and donated 5,000 toys to children in their city. The campaign was so successful that Marine Reserve Units around the country began collecting and donating toys, under the shared objective to “bring the joy of Christmas to America’s needy children.” Since its inception in 1947, the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program has distributed over 490 million toys to more than 230 million needy children across the country. With a great military base, strong charity presence and generous-minded people and industry, District 32 is a great place for Toys for Tots to contribute to the children of our area. If you would like to learn more or get additional info, please visit Toys for Tots.

Events are held around the area to promote the Toys for Tots holiday drive effort from the public, along with Marines from the local Naval Air Station who collect donations. The Catholic Charities of Corpus Christi is participating in the Toys for Tots program as well as a Christmas Food Baskets program, during which the organization distributed food baskets earlier this month.

The HEB Feast of Sharing is another holiday event taking place this season, which allows the community to participate in a spirit of holiday sharing. HEB hosts the holiday feast annually across the state. The Coastal Bend hosts a dinner in Corpus Christi at the American Bank Center on December 22 from 11 AM to 3 PM. According to the organization’s website, just one Feast of Sharing event equals: 3,000 pounds of sliced turkey, 2,500 pounds of cornbread dressing, 750 pumpkin pies, and 140 gallons of turkey gravy. For additional details, you can visit HEB Feast of Sharing.

In addition to these two great organizations, there are many other charitable events in the area occurring this holiday season. As we prepare for a new year, let’s join in helping the community and bettering the lives of those around us.

If you have questions regarding any of the information mentioned in this week’s article, please do not hesitate to call my Capitol or District Office. Please always feel free to contact my office if you have any questions or issues regarding a Texas state agency, or if you would like to contact my office regarding constituent services. As always, my offices are available at any time to assist with questions, concerns or comments (Capitol Office, 512-463-0672; District Office, 361-949-4603).

State Representative Todd Hunter, District 32

Rep. Hunter represents Nueces (Part) County. He can be contacted at todd.hunter@house.texas.gov or at 512-463-0672.