KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Children who visit their families at the Jackson County Detention Center (JCDC) this holiday season will receive a surprise gift, thanks to Metropolitan Community College-Penn Valley and Jackson County.
For immediate release: December 18, 2017
Metropolitan Community College, Christina Medina. Office: 816.604.1412 | Mobile: 816.548.0240, Email: Christina.Medina@mcckc.edu
Jackson County, Marshanna Hester. Office: 816.881.1391 | Mobile: 816.878.1930, Email: Mhester@jacksongov.org
Santa will be at the JCDC on Thursday, Dec. 21 from 3-5 p.m. (please note time change). Media are invited to speak with families as they receive gifts, detention center associates and MCC employees. Media must RSVP their attendance with associated names to the Jackson County media contact by 5 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 20.
Now in its 12th year, MCC-Penn Valley’s Criminal Justice Association Toy Drive provides toys to children of all ages, from infants to teenagers. Toys are collected from students and staff on campus through mid-December. All of the gifts are then wrapped by detention center associates and handed out to every child who visits a family member, until all the gifts are distributed.
This year, Jackson County joined in on the toy drive in an effort to spread holiday cheer to more children. Giving trees were set up in the courthouse in downtown Kansas City and at the Historic Truman Courthouse in Independence. Associates were encouraged to take an ornament from the tree and purchase a suggested gift.
“The generosity of Jackson County associates never ceases to amaze me. Because of them, we can support the efforts of many organizations throughout the year,” said Jackson County Executive Frank White, Jr. “It is extra special to help others during the holiday season and our giving tree is a great way to do that. Last year, we donated gifts to JobOne. This year, we are proud to share in the joy of our detention center staff, who look forward to bringing smiles to kids’ faces.”
The MCC Toy Drive project started with students and now includes faculty and staff. Dr. Karen Curls, social science division chair at MCC-Penn Valley, has been involved with the toy drive since its inception, as has administrative assistant Donna Wallace.
“This effort comes so much from the students and I couldn’t be more proud,” Curls said.
The MCC Toy Drive, which collects 100-150 toys each year, is also in conjunction with the MCC’s Brooks Institute.