“This is a project the deputies, dispatchers and the rest of our crew thought would be good to help with,” Sheriff Lance Humphreys told the Herald. There are 350 locations across the state where toys can be dropped off, including two drop boxes at the Yalobusha County Jail, located at Calhoun Street in Water Valley. The toys must be dropped off not later than December 13.
The hospital is the only hospital in the state devoted exclusively to the care and treatment of sick and injured children.
During the holiday season the hospital staff collect donations of new toys to create gift bags–”Santa Bags”– for the patients who are hospitalized over the holidays. The bags are delivered, with Santa’s help, to each patient on Christmas Eve.
The hospital can only accept new, unwrapped items due to infection control. The hospital guidelines also forbid latex balloons; electrical, spark producing or friction-producing toys; stuffed toys should be filled with fabric batting or solid foam; painted toys and craft items such as glue, crayons or paint should be labeled non-toxic.
The facility serves more than 150,000 children from all of the state’s 82 counties come to each year. The spectrum of care ranges from well-child care for healthy newborns to care for cancer, congenital heart defects, epilepsy, cystic fibrosis, trauma, sickle cell anemia, neurological disorders, pulmonary disease, allergies, diabetes and numerous other childhood illnesses.