Instead of spending money on flowers for its upcoming fundraising gala, the Child Advocacy Center of Sedgwick County plans to create centerpieces with toys, crayons, sticker books and other goodies that the children it serves can later enjoy.
The community can help.
The Wichita Eagle is partnering with the group to collect toys for the nearly 2,000 children the center serves every year. The Eagle has been publishing its “In Need of Care” series about child abuse and neglect since June.
The donations will help in more ways than one. Attendees at the gala will bid on the centerpieces, further raising money for the center. But the toys and other components of the centerpieces will go straight to children who need comfort.
Through Oct. 28, people can drop off donations from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays in the main lobby of The Eagle, 825 E. Douglas. Parking is off Rock Island behind the building.
The center’s third annual Heroes Gala will be 6 to 9 p.m. Nov. 1 at the Scottish Rite Center at 332 E. First. The event will feature cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and live and silent auctions. Two concert pianists from The 5 Browns will perform. Tickets are $75 per person and may be ordered by contacting Theresa Lewis at 316-660-9494 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Tables for eight are $500. The event is the center’s largest fundraiser and supports the organization’s general budget.
The center, where professionals who investigate child abuse and neglect work together to help lessen further trauma to children, is asking for the following items to use as centerpieces at the gala and to give to children later:
▪ Fleece blankets
▪ Barbie dolls, baby dolls, ethnic dolls
▪ Disney character items
▪ Footballs, basketballs, softballs, soccer balls, Nerf balls, Frisbees
▪ Art and craft kits
▪ Play Doh
▪ Blank journals for writing
▪ Jewelry makers and bead projects
▪ Sidewalk chalk
▪ Watercolor paints with pads of paper
▪ Bathtub toys and crayons
▪ Sticker books
▪ Small boxes of Legos and blocks
▪ Model cars, airplanes, trains and tractors
▪ Small puzzles, board games and playing cards
▪ Superhero, Mutant Ninja Turtles, Minecraft and dinosaur figurines
▪ $5 gift cards for iTunes or Google Play
Items should be new and in their packages. The center does not need stuffed animals. The center also needs items such as packaged snack crackers, juice boxes and bottled water.