Toys for Tots in Cortland County needs new space

toys for tots

Updated story: Toys for Tots is back on

CORTLAND, N.Y. — Over the past year, the Cortland County Toys for Tots program has looked for a new location to store and distribute toys since announcement of the sale of its current home on 165 South Main Street (Crescent Building).

Program coordinator Norm Stitzel has followed up with every lead on every vacant building, but each space has been problematic; either it’s too small, doesn’t have connected utilities, or property owners are not willing to provide the space. To fully operate, the program needs to be a publicly accessible 4,000 square feet open space for storage and to set up for October to December distribution to the public. The Toys for Tots Foundation provides gift in kind donation receipts for charitable giving for taxes. In order to prepare for the next campaign, the toy inventory needs to be moved and set up for public distribution, all which takes the volunteer staff three weeks to accomplish before November online toy requests and distribution.

To date, no offers have come forward. We regret that without distribution space, the 2016 Toys for Tots campaign must be cancelled. The program will focus on finding storage space (approximately 2,000 square feet) for its existing inventory by September 1, the deadline given to vacate their current location. The program hopes to find donated space for storage before exploring the alternative of renting storage PODS for inventory.

When distribution space is secured, the campaign will resume in Cortland County—hopefully next year.