General Hospital is keeping a wonderful Christmas tradition going: for the sixth year in a row, the ABC soap opera has partnered with the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation to bring holiday happiness to underprivileged children across the nation.
In addition to airing a special episode just before Christmas this year, GH has teamed up with its parent company, Disney, to bring awareness to Toys for Tots and to help raise money for the foundation.
From now through December 15, fans can donate a new, unwrapped toy at a US Disney store or through www.shopdisney.com. For each gift donated, the Disney store and shopDisney will donate $5 to Toys for Tots -- up to $1 million!
Several GH stars visited the Disney store at the Glendale Galleria in Los Angeles this week and went on a shopping spree to help kickstart the goodwill.
"I'm a kid in a toy store!" enthuses Donnell Turner (Curtis Ashford). "It feels good to be able to do this and make a lot of kids happy."
Says Eden McCoy (Josslyn Jacks): "Being able to have the whole store to ourselves and pick out what we want for people is just the best feeling in the world, and I'm so grateful that we get this opportunity."
Adds Lexi Ainsworth (Kristina Davis): "I'm picking out all these toys and thinking about, like, when the kids wake up on Christmas morning and opening them up and how excited they're going to be."
The mission of the U. S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program, as stated on the organization's official website, is to collect new, unwrapped toys in the months leading up to Christmas and distribute those toys as gifts to less fortunate children in the community. Founded in 1947 by Major Bill Hendricks, the foundation started with the first gift of a handmade doll and has since gone on to include millions of toys of all sorts handed out to children across the country each year.
GH's special Toys for Tots episode is scheduled to air on Friday, December 21, and will see the entire town of Port Charles getting into the holiday spirit. The celebration will include a reading from 'Twas the Night Before Christmas and a surprise visit from Santa Claus and his helpers, who will pass out gifts to the children at General Hospital.
What do you think about GH continuing its holiday tradition of teaming up with Toys for Tots for Christmas? Which Disney toy would you love to gift to an underprivileged child? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.