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Foster Kid Toy Drive

Nov 20, 2009|

A discussion with Gina Davis of Sleep Country USA about their year-round charitible events for foster children and specifically their current Secret Santa Toy Drive.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

You're listening to -- go through a series of interviews with -- people of interest in northwest Oregon and southwest Washington I'm your host Ted Douglas since I began hosting this program about five months ago or so I've become quite fascinated with taking a peek behind the public personas of many of our local businesses. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- But to get things kicked off let's get our listeners a little bit of background on yourself and what you do for sleep country USA. I think countries bound senior brand managers that I -- basically helped create our ads that are massive in them and make sure the community knows what we're just. Yes we can GSA has been involved with Foster children for for quite awhile when was the fostered his program founded. I would edit program in 2005. Before that we are doing lots of different charities and we decided we really wanna -- hone in on one thing and really. But all our efforts towards making a big difference for her for one charity so we looked around you had before doing and and we didn't see anybody really taking on the cause asked. Foster kids that we dot com we -- step often and make that happen. Excellent and why you choose Foster children what what drew your company towards that issue. Well there's 26000 Foster children in the northwest about -- extremely large number. And a lot of these children are you know are placed in front comes through no fault of their own and it's a very. Scary situation where a child the situations are coming out of are not good for them and then changing and Q a home -- you know nothing can be can be scary. These cancer kind of then in -- and that's scary time in any really think that they can use how to make sure that. They -- the items that they needed to need to be head and domestic feed and and a lot of these things are just being Matt. The average -- -- -- -- child is only given 200 dollars a year -- clothing allowance to allow. As you know kidney growl and and that doesn't cover my see row and so we thought well we can put our stores hugely endorsed 75 -- to -- to get the community involved. And bring awareness said that these children you know exist in the need our help and they need our support. And they don't -- another committee cares about them. Right so we holds six drives throughout the year I'm different actually different times and then collected many items we can and we collect money on. On line and hold events coupon offer better the child of these kids. And you do these right out of your stores of people can bring their donations right to any of those -- five locations and Sony publications you guys are everywhere. Yeah I you studios signs -- there isn't pretty different women all the stars take donations than. They have posters that ten barrels than any -- pressure that he wanted more information that way we also just started that you Richard taking. Donations online -- don't have time to shop for. I player code or whatever everything on you can go to the country dot com and donate online and we'll shop for you and make sure the -- to cover ballet. So you can go there and the donate right online or you can also use your store located find out which one is nearest you. Definitely our call 18888 sleep and you -- the store nearest you valley camp. Excellent now you take these donations you guys are you but you say you do some shopping. What are you looking for what should people specifically be bringing -- this time a year for the secret territory drive. Well right now we're in the great drive so obviously if it's Christmas time holiday time and we're looking for a lot of staying there a lot of children and we need you know helped her in the holiday it. -- gift items are always we would get waste your vows to those are always great things like MP3 players and movies. But games magazine thing you know things that that he can like make up hit close. -- saying that you could you think that -- he -- like we're also looking for items for younger children to Aldridge proxy barbie's now learning to -- Bike -- the banking head musical instruments. Although it kind of things that you can think of that your children -- each other's big this year at these kids have the same the same wants and needs -- while self. We get an amazing amount of guests that come game we just are always an odd that dot that people put in kicked and hit that items are kids that it's. You know what ages and they really put a lot of thought into these in these -- and it's it's so heartwarming to see the communities. Democratic ticket. Yeah and if you don't have kids if you're kind of clueless as to what the hot new thing is you know I feel free to ask someone at a store I'm sure they nine. Now who do you see out of what kind of demo horror who greasy donated to this and who do we need to target who are we not getting enough love. Well you know we've actually -- the -- really grown and grown and grown since we started 2005 originally with a lot of individuals that we're doing any you know our families that are doing on their around. Now seeing a lot of companies as well join an individual samples get -- -- driving the one -- tried a lot of companies hold. -- -- around the holidays -- you mean break out the most popular gift items -- have them pick them up and drop them off at a store we'll do all that back and works Oreo. But it's church is good girl scout group for our last coach -- we had a soccer club the girls collected over 300 coats for Foster kids -- else. It's amazing to see how many people content take that and -- you know I think I can do something great effect and and give it a shot that you collect it or we'll get it out there. And you know maybe that's an option to do you ignore or is that -- officer were placed. If maybe you know with times being tough right now if you don't have money or products to donate to this cause that work still organize a bunch of people to give and then. And then it's like you're given a whole bunch of stuff. Yes definitely our young penny not everybody. They you know as saying hey they're holding this drive and -- you -- that you your FaceBook page you know spreading and spreading the -- -- watch you every every child that's preached is that you know I think how deserves little -- -- holidays and hopefully we can reach reach all of them. So you've got age ranges some windy kids into the cost -- -- from birds. They DeLia I intend to teens dead range in between boys and girls we get a lot of -- items that -- you remember boys as well so yeah -- It is it's really a good variety. And Christie -- teens. And this program has been going on them for a little bit yet and it's going Intel win. Eight and December 13 elevated to December 13 just chopped off at historic donate online and we are -- and every week at wolf keep gives -- -- it after the crash tonight. -- know -- of the focuses on toys that are you still collecting clothing items and that sort of thing. Will always collect clothing and post because they can always -- -- to use any -- -- actually make good Christmas gift is while our focus this is really came into hallways and and things that can be a little fun because they don't necessarily always get the little things. Then nonessential things but the things that make child the child had. And this is a way also I mean not only helping the kids -- -- helping the kind people who have injure themselves into a Foster child program these are people who have opened up their lives to bring a child and and and help raise them for however long period of time they end up doing it it's an expensive proposition I mean even though there are some -- some money that comes from the government to help out. He has doesn't cover the cost of taking on children and usually much -- parents have more than one Foster child. And so you know there's there's multiple -- take into consideration and knowing that a lot of these children the first year that they and their program they move -- four times so Foster parents that many of them are getting kids that rotates. You know quite off again and it's hard to provide everything that child -- when it when they rotating your home so frequently. All right I'm and then you're you're looking and also they have to buy a new clothing in a new items reach your child comes and. Yeah and school supplies then all of those you know basic a lot of -- children come and coupons or compare with the clothing on their back especially -- -- -- -- -- environments like that you can't take anything out of that house so. They come much. Sometimes literally nothing while it starting from scratch so any thing I've heard -- -- the parents say you know this took so much. Stress off my back up. You're trying to provide a great Christmas for these kids that some of them have never had -- -- warm Christian -- -- Christmas with -- search. At as something of their own counteract that they want to provide and you know by and I'm giving them these items that they can be you know matched with their correct head. They can then use that money to get them more clothes or shoes or. You know maybe it's something I'd like you know musical -- there are -- that they weren't able to get on the path so it allows them to provide them and other ways to let us take a little -- -- just off the whole thing and let them enjoy the holiday. You know as well as letting these kids fueled a bit of normalcy. In their life I'm sure they go back to school at the Christmas break and you know -- -- the kids with their new clothes -- the new gadgets yeah and one night and you know a lot of times -- left without. And normalcy isn't a big thing with Foster children you know making sure they feel self worthy and they feel like other kids then. And you know letting them took it when they're in school on school and not what they don't have or that they're different -- or somehow not as good as good as other children and so now we definitely want to get. Provide year round but this is the big one when you know I'll pick it can't be talking about what they got in -- and all these things that we want to make sure. Sure because I have a warm. Memorable happy holiday. Yeah and as we all know we you know this is a rough economic times for every one. And it not seen the need to break the bank on this you know if you dropped when he Bucs gonna on some for one of these kids that'll do it. That and I asked. That I made just one let's present under the tree for yourself this year and. Look at Martin you know Black Friday you keep an amazing deal Montoya then them if you don't you know have kids that they want that's specific I am a big -- get very you know posh italics be matched -- with the kids that want that -- so don't look at for the deal camps. Now as far as clothing items go NN you're always looking for backpacks and things like that for school are you looking only for new items or -- is urgently Warren. He looks pretty I had them and clothing and and she uses that we'll take you gently used we just try to get new because a lot of these children never learned anything else. Right they've never had anything up there around to father -- and I make a big difference in their self ego that we will put to use whatever we -- If you just joined us you're listening to microscope a series of interviews with people of interest in northwest Oregon and southwest Washington I'm your host Ted Douglas. And speaking today once again with Gena Davis from sleep country USA about their amazing Foster kids program and specifically right now the secret Santa toy drive now if someone -- to drop the soft do you want them to wrap the gift. Now keep it under wraps that we noted is -- immaculate the child. They know lot of debt they got around to -- -- up at any store. Or donate online it will go shopping for you -- -- -- -- -- with our partners to you know get it out to about antibiotic. You don't want to you know that the babies into the the iPod and an -- and although I will Savvis sixteen month old daughter and she loves my iPod scintillating thing little buttons and things like guys. The big guest. They get this year their definitely air MP3 players in general our hands. And yet any and you would think that those might be expensive but a lot of them are coming way down in price there aren't credible than you think. Gap is there anyplace -- a little in the stores and dropped them offered specifically source. Also country stars as others heavily padded bombs against our church specifically organic cash online and look at Korea. And let's give that website once again actually country dot com excellent when you guys take all of -- like -- come to you you get these barrels and barrels of of toys and clothing what happens then where those go. The -- allegedly got 141000 toy it'll or its allies they come into our warehouse is and we kind of on sort them of the -- to get there are the large get to kind of credit that and we count them all her. Which is an undertaking itself 141000 dad -- them up into -- quite made and then we -- updates we have -- updates for our partners for the stride just because we have to get -- for the holidays to all of our partners come to that warehouse and they get bags of toys that they have been -- to the children and their program so large -- like I -- or we have electric drums that last year or we have -- laptop or some of the bigger right and we now are partners -- today you know who's got -- perfect child for the guest in the rematch -- -- this way that way to do we make sure that the right child getting you know if there's something particular. -- we can get it but how that would make as much impact for them. So I mean you guys are certainly you do this all year round in one former another year as -- always helping out Foster kids I imagine did you have a pretty have. Staffs worked on the around it's our regular -- Isn't people who are working sources. I undid that it isn't really -- -- -- lot of great things about our program is that it. It's our program and everybody is involved it's. On the -- that I I work with -- have -- the -- we create ads in our peer companies to get as much. Awareness about an hour stores they're getting the donations to their bag them up if there's any question there informing customers and and then they come and where warehouse then our house that takes time out of their normal routines and then sort through them all and count and then it's you know and then taking all the telephone calls from -- people looking for help then there is departments. All over our company that. Are all giving their peace to help grow this program men and we all like evacuated that. -- it's something nice you know you know we know we're making an impact on them thousand tickets by just. It's rewarding in itself. Absolutely and you know it we if you're gonna go out and pick -- and I this if you have kids from the big proponent of -- -- I'm always talking about on the show. Take your kid with you go pick out a -- certainly they're gonna have an idea of what is the hot new thing. And give the need the experience of buying something for someone else because if you can instill that feeling. That they get from doing something good for someone else to do do a little bit of charity. Dennis Fisher on the holidays of course that's the proper time for. It really instills that love for doing charitable things for their whole life and it's it's a really nice lesson to teach your kids. And you know they can help you guns. What do you know thank you have ticket and it's fun for them we see a lot of families. They got to the family and then there especially even Stanley day surrounding and and you know go pick out the items to -- go to a store and drop an option to wonderful message to keep your kids I have a three year old and we're doing that this year. For the first time you have taking him and he can pick -- the at a minimal yelled safe going to kid needed an and I think it's. It's a wonderful message to teach your kids early on to get back. Absolutely -- she did 141000. And it -- this is something that goes up every year. It dad gas so we're just we're hoping euphoric or perhaps economic here and now. On Foster families are feeling it just as wild so I'm hoping we can reach -- -- even marshall's are here. And I think the key is you know -- and everybody's turn. Yeah -- might something small. -- everybody -- a little bad is it equal so much this program is. As -- you know -- individual community members making. A giant difference to so many thousands of children. Everybody makes a difference and that. And I mention also leave you mentioned earlier immune movies and things like after the teens -- -- -- keep in mind that they're going to teens it's that's appropriate. Age appropriate is it get family appropriate if it had yet -- all those. And although the -- gets. Do you guys still true that when you bring through our partners felt pressure that they can decide what you -- they -- have different -- this world but you know we actually don't ever him very much -- -- imagine people to keep -- pretty super. It just they put some thought into it yeah yeah if they're gonna go through the trouble but even like a dvd symbol like -- -- mean new dvds right now or are like ten bucks you can go out and get something. You're -- weekend they have at five dollars and exactly yeah I definitely. Yet even even a goat in the video stores they may have used dvds and things like that -- you know seven a box. Definitely have such a great idea measles who -- tough -- might pay you can get great deals -- -- look you know look around and he achieved you can get a lot of us have free shipping -- when you're shopping for your kids online you can find something for profit child -- lucky to -- and now. That's that's interesting ideas head cases where people have shipped -- to directly to. We -- specially for the -- Really -- because you can ship straight from and the bank content straight to their location to just look up a store a look at our -- authentic and their constituents would actually take care of it. So there you go if you you know it's not just a matter of money if you don't have the time to use something like this -- computer for a few minutes pick something out and boom. Excellent so your partners you've spoken about your partners and they organization is -- -- who are there organizations that are teamed up with you guys on this. We have seven while Arafat's right now so -- a -- we try to cover all areas where we have stores anywhere -- -- -- -- -- -- as possible -- -- areas that we think that we -- that -- -- -- So Washington -- can Washington organ -- and Oregon and I'm actually -- in Eugene donations and -- needing to affect communities that you're trying to help they're on non profits failed -- Foster care like three about Mark Killian family services organ Foster parent association are Foster family care network by -- seven but the that they all are tremendous partners and and works so hard to make sure. These -- -- covered in so many more ways than that were able to reach. -- the really the ground troops they aren't doing one on one with these families and these children so. -- -- back to you know they get a handout they got a little lot of and a lot of cases are there are caseworkers are and just. Being able to see the kids -- -- up and really changed their you know Dallek corridor day just to get and -- parachute or out you know at Christmas gift and and that there is that they get to keep bad is a foreign concept -- so many of these children have ever own anything. -- yeah ever -- or you know something to be proud -- something to be excited to show your schoolmates so. Yeah they they they get hand out these these these Geffen really -- reaction which I'm sure as wonderful thing. Have you had an opportunity to do that. I have been so -- have access to the posture because I hear all the stories yeah. And I idea get a lot of access with groups that are donating money DM 25. Soccergirl without collecting. And bear responses Q why there is donating was -- never not how to -- before and I I really thought that pocket -- it's. And coming from an eight year old -- that's -- Yeah that's this from talking about if -- can get that in the kids young man makes all the difference you make a terrible person who'll help out their whole life. They are so proud to help and I think I don't think they understood before that that there was a -- that may begin to have these items necessarily or that they can make a difference. To help others in those situations so. We -- that pride see -- girls and their parents were where beaming and and seeing all those stories of the community you know reaching outside of what we ever thought that they would -- really getting behind the causes and helping us reach. -- markets every year it's wonderful. You know what I was in high school as per student council only had a toy drive every year -- -- food drive from around the holidays and I got the opportunity. Yeah I think it is my sophomore junior year to actually go in deliver. To the families there were in need we have like round ten to twelve families that we deliver to that this they gave us today -- to school me in a couple of kids went drove drove around to their homes and it. Boy I tell you have no idea that there's -- there is assert -- a satisfaction comes from from put -- -- warrior clothing item into barrel. But yet you're -- -- right when you see the faces of those families and those kids it's not just that they're getting something in there excited. That they're getting something it's. Something out of gas -- signals meant that. Fold my lord somebody out there is willing to help me. Who's going to help -- my family. It's really is patient -- ever gonna make your charitable person than that -- it oh yes yes and then it's it's much more that they you know it's cost you twenty bucks. Anything's gone given a gift but really what you're giving us some hope to these kids had to. -- -- that they -- so many of them ever an amber wake you fat. Yes yes. Because they get bounced around that you know I'm sure they'll hit you know use some of them for five for how homes a year. -- -- often say so while that person has six home -- You know -- -- school in new people in new parent than a new home menu items and I think Gary has as a young child haven has -- you know it's hard to change environment by just don't have they -- construction involved. Yeah on top of -- a lot of times coming from a stressful or disastrous homeland to begin to act. -- you know they yeah they come in web. They come in -- troubled -- yet these children definitely need to love and support in acknowledgment. And they don't need to be worrying about what's on the C. You know. So if you've got a little bit to help out help out whether -- time in organizing in a work drive to put some toys and clothes together for these Foster children you can take them all -- -- drop -- any of the 75 sleep country -- locations. And you can find those locations is sleep country -- -- can step outside of your home your building and throw a rock you know that one. Yeah. Kind of grand -- how are if you if you find yourself doing some grocery shopping or whatever and they you know you're in the store the -- and toys are some dvds or something. And you've got a little bit to pick up a little extra something do that drop it wisely country and and what's really help make this the biggest secret Santa toward drive it's the country USA ever. Last year that it 141000. Items let's beat that this year. That would at least 6000 kids. 26000 kids my lord. All right well believe they're now we are out of time thank you so much for joining us again here Gina I'm -- anything else you like to remind anyone of for a go. Now I just did then December 13 and you can drop off the unwrapped toy is. -- started. Very good very good well thank you again and that will do it for this edition a match a scope and Entercom communications public affairs program I've been your host Ted Douglas if given nonprofit or public affairs organization that you would like to let others know about please email me at microscope @entercom.com. And intercom starts with a -- And please put microscope in the subject lines who doesn't get snagged by my spam filter -- go directly to the station's website click on the community link and submit your information there. Also if you'd like to hear this program again you can visit our podcast page that mr. scope PDA excite com where you'll find this and the last couple months worth of episodes. And please please encourage you feel free to link to these shows to your FaceBook your MySpace your blog what have you was trying get this information out as as much as possible this is a quick and easy way to do it. You send someone the mp3 in this everything's explained and you don't have to explain it all yourself senator rounds in the link around -- your office and and maybe gets their office party. Put together -- to take -- this is still several weeks left. You are gathered some toys and get them to any of the 75 sleep country USA locations sleep country dot com. We'll give you any of the locations and all the details on how to take part. Thank you again GM thank you for all the wonderful work you're doing for these Foster children who are -- you desperately in need. Thank you all so much for listening this has been metro scope yeah. Really. It's. Really. Okay. It's. He's the man. Okay. And you know. You know. Yeah. This. Okay. -- -- It's. Okay. Yeah. -- --