(Washington, DC) – On December 20, 2011, the Mayor’s Office on Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs (OAPIA) held its annual “Share a Smile, Give a Toy” Holiday Toy Drive and Open House at the OAPIA office. Over 300 donated toys were distributed to DC children.
The OAPIA office was adorned with holiday decorations to welcome guests of all ages in a celebration of the holiday season. Food and refreshments were provided to community members and organizations as well as the opportunity to ask questions and learn more about the resources and services OAPIA offers. Children enjoyed snacks, watched holiday movies, received toys, and took photos with Santa Claus.
“Getting gifts from Santa was the best part,” said 5-year-old Treyel Norman, one of over 125 children in attendance.
Contributions from local and national businesses, community organizations, and individuals made possible the distribution of toys to the DC children.
“It is encouraging to see the spirit of the holidays celebrated during these times of economic hardship.” said Mayor Vincent C. Gray. “I thank the donors and volunteers for their generous contributions that bring such joy to the children.”
OAPIA Director Julie Koo thanked the APIA Naval Sea Systems Command, Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association (DC Chapter), Destiny – Pride, Inc., Hepatitis B Initiative of Washington DC, Korean American Grocers Association of Greater Washington DC, Macy's Department Stores, Inc., Many Languages One Voice, McDonald’s Family Restaurants of Greater Washington, DC, National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (DC Chapter), OCA-NOVA, Senoda, Inc., Target Corporation, Young Won Trading, Inc., and other generous donors and attendees for making the event a success.
“The positive response from the community is always uplifting, especially in celebration of the holiday season,” said Director Koo. “This event is only possible through everyone’s support.”