Harrisonburg Auto Mall donates money to start Toy Convoy season

ROCKINGHAM COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) — Toy Convoy is right around the corner, and the owners of Harrisonburg Auto Mall kicked off the season with a generous donation of $5,000 toward gifts for children.

The $5,000 donation loaded up a lot of carts with toys for children who may not have a Christmas otherwise.

Rose Swartz, one of the owners, handed Salvation Army Captain John Blevins the check and they started filling up shopping carts with toys.

"Christmas is for kids, and you know, we like to give back to the community that supports us all year," said Swartz.

Her family has been giving this donation for eleven years.

"It just melts your heart, I mean you know, to know that they're going to be able to have a fun Christmas that they might not otherwise get, so we really love being a part of that."

This year, Toy Convoy will help 1,130 children and 518 families overall. Captain Blevins said the children they need toys for the most are in the 10-12 age range.

"We want to make sure that every one of those children have at least a few toys to wake up to on Christmas," said Blevins.

Braelynn Swartz, Rose's daughter, said some gifts kids might like to see this year are LOL dolls, superhero toys, and Paw Patrol items.

"It's a lot of money, but it's worth it, like because some kids don't get toys, so it's definitely worth it," said Braelynn.

The group filled up carts and then checked out at the register. Next, they packed boxes on boxes into the Salvation Army van.

"It's a wonderful feeling when you can load up a van full of toys kind of like Santa's sleigh here in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County," said Blevins.

Collection for Toy Convoy officially starts on November 26 at the Staunton Christmas Parade