Surrey Christmas Bureau has found a home for the season in Newton.
Every year, the organization searches for donated space large enough for its seasonal operations.
On Friday, the bureau’s new executive director, Lisa Werring, said Vansea Holdings Ltd. has stepped up to offer the former Fraser Valley Aboriginal Friendship Centre, at 6878 King George Blvd., across from the PricePro/Value Village retail complex.
“We really appreciate Vansea’s generosity in allowing us to use this space as our Toy Depot,” Werring stated.
“The space comes complete with offices that will enable us to house both registration and Adopt-a-Family volunteers all under one roof, which will work very well for volunteers, registrants and donors alike.”
Volunteers are working to “deck the halls” and transform the space into a “pop-up toy store” as they gear up for general registration and match sponsors with families in need through the Adopt-a-Family program.
On Monday (Nov. 6), Werring said the site was still being set up.
“We have computer techs in today, we’re moving around furniture, so we’re busy getting ready,” she told the Now-Leader.
Starting Thursday (Nov. 9), the site will be open for registration from Monday to Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., ending Dec. 2. The site will be closed on Saturday, Nov. 11 for Remembrance Day.
In previous years, residents have started lining up as early as 6 a.m.
Last year, the toy depot was located in the former Brick store on 104th Avenue, across from Surrey City Hall.
Surrey Christmas Bureau’s mission is “to provide toys to Surrey families that otherwise couldn’t afford Christmas presents for their children.”
Last year, they registered close to 2,000 low-income families in Surrey (including more than 4,000 children), and Werring expects to exceed those numbers during the 2017 holiday season.
Individuals or businesses wanting to sponsor a family can call 604-581-9623, or visit christmasbureau.com. The depot will be ready to receive donations of toys starting on Nov. 9. No used household goods will be accepted this year, but gently used children’s coats and clothes are welcome, Werring noted.
To register with Surrey Christmas Bureau, applicants must have the following documents:
• Government-issued photo identification
• Proof of residence (phone bill, electric or gas bill, cable bill, landlord agreement)
• BC Medical Care Cards for all in the family
• All immigration papers and permanent residency cards
• Proof of receiving Social Assistance OR proof of income for last three months, paystubs, all bank statements, direct deposit info