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Fill a tank with toys

photo by Staff Sgt. Randy Redman

4-H Operation Military Kids is joining forces with the military and community organizations throughout the area to benefit the children of deployed soldiers.

It's one thing to fill a Christmas stocking, but filling a Bradley Fighting Vehicle is definitely a "tank-size" task. 4-H Operation Military Kids is up for the challenge. They are joining forces with individuals, the military and various community organizations throughout a six-county area to launch a "fill a tank with toys" campaign toy drive. This toy drive will benefit the children of, currently deployed soldiers who are fighting in the war on terrorism.

4-H Operation Military Kids is a national program that seeks to create a community support network for children and youth of deployed soldiers. The program is the result of a collaborative effort between the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Army, Extension Service and 4-H. Through 4-H programs, Operation Military Kids delivers recreational, social and educational programs to military youth living in civilian communities. Starting in February, the local OMK program has launched and successfully completed several projects and is hoping to end the year with a "tank-size" bang!

During the Seasonal Sensations Winter Holiday Celebration Dec. 3, volunteers will be collecting new unwrapped toys throughout the day. The event location is Pinewood Cultural Park - 12520 Ulmerton Road, in Largo. Toys may also be dropped off early in one of several drop-off locations starting the week of Thanksgiving. Though the toy drive is a main focal point, there is much more in store. The Seasonal Sensations event will involve participants in fun, family oriented, hands-on educational programming that focuses on multicultural traditions, arts and crafts, food and nutrition and the spirit of giving.

For more information regarding the "Fill A Tank With Toys" campaign, drop-off locations or the Seasonal Sensations Holiday Event, contact Flo Hervey, 4-H Operation Military Kids Regional Coordinator at 744-5519, ext. 115, or via e-mail at herveyf@ufl.edu. (Courtesy of 4-H Operation Military Kids)

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