San Jacinto Wildlife Area’s Annual Toy Drive Begins

San Jacinto Wildlife Area has begun their Annual Toy Drive, this year to benefit the Knotts Family Agency Foster Program. This year, due to COVID-19 restrictions the Bryant Park Head Start Preschool was not able to participate with SJWA as they usually would.  Tom Trakes and San Jacinto WA Staff are still conducting their annual toy drive, but this time it will benefit the kids at Knotts Family Agency Foster Program.

SJWA is dedicating this years Toy Drive in memory of Reverend Jessie Martinez who passed away this past September 25.  Many of you know Reverend Jessie from his invocations at SJWA’s Junior Hunt each year.  Reverend Jessie was always an integral part of SJ’s annual toy drive, playing Santa and giving the toys out to the kids for many years.  In addition, Reverend Jessie and his wife fostered and eventually adopted two children from The Knotts Family Agency’s Foster Program.

Knotts Family Agency was established in 1992 by Gwen and James Knotts as a safety net strategy for homeless teens and their babies. With a track record of more than 20 years, the organization evolved from an exclusive focus on foster care to now supporting safe, stable families and communities. Knotts Family Agency has emerged as a leader in providing evidence based comprehensive support and services to promote the emotional, social, physical, intellectual, cultural well-being and development of children, youth, adults and families.

Knotts Family Agency population served are ages 0-20 in Riverside and San Bernardino County.

Their special programs are:

• Foster to adopt

• Adoption ·

• Short term and Long-term Foster Care

• Respite Care

• Temporary Emergency Program

• Commercially Sexualized Exploited Children

There are over 60,000 children in foster care in California, with approximately 5,000 in San Bernardino; 4,200 in Riverside; 3,000 in San Diego; 2,000 in Orange County; and 30,000 in neighboring Los Angeles county. The need is great! You are needed today more than ever.

SoCalHunt encourages all the hunters that hunt at San Jacinto in the next several weeks to bring along a new, unwrapped toy to donate for the kids.  This is a chance to show the general public that hunters really do have a heart.  The focus of the Toy Drive is for the younger children so hunters should bring in toys that are intended for the younger preschool to about kindergarten or 1st grade aged boys and girls.

The usual Toy Box is present and ready to go at the SJ check station.  Donations for the Knotts Family Agency Foster Program will be accepted at San Jacinto until December 19th. Santa Claus and the San Jacinto Staff will deliver the toys to the children shortly after.  These donations do not need to go through the state procedures for donations (such as the donations for the Junior Hunt) as San Jacinto is not receiving the donations but is just a collection point for them.

Please take this opportunity to show that hunters really have a heart and do care. Donate to the San Jacinto Annual Toy Drive and support this great effort.

For further details please contact Tom at (951)-236-3040 or the San Jacinto Wildlife Area Office at (951)-928-0580.  Toys can be donated at the San Jacinto Wildlife Area Office at 17050 Davis Road, Lakeview, CA 92567.

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