Junior League organizes toy drive for Carilion Children’s Hospital

Drive-thru event collected approximately 150 new toys for the children

ROANOKE, Va. – The patients at Carilion Children’s Hospital will soon receive special gifts to help them through tough times, thanks to a socially distanced toy drive.

The Junior League of the Roanoke Valley collected about 150 toys during its drive-thru donation event at Tanglewood Mall on Saturday.

The organization’s executive vice president, Katie Jones, said they were motivated to collect toys after hearing there were fewer donations to Carilion Children’s than usual this year because of the pandemic.

“We wanted to find a way we could help,” Jones said. “When we found that donations for toys were much lower than usual, we thought this is something we can do.”

Carilion Children’s childlife specialist Carli Holtzhauer said the toys are not just for the holidays. She said the donations will help stock the hospital’s supply of toys for the entire year.

“We use toys for so many things,” Holtzhauer said. “Birthdays, holidays, end of treatments, for kids who have had a long admission and just need a little pick-me-up. It helps makes the hospital a better place for kids to be.”