(12/10/13) - Across Mid-Michigan, organizations are working hard to make sure children have something under the tree this Christmas.
That includes the Bay County Toys for Tots.
While they are receiving donations, it may not be enough. Hundreds of children have signed up for Toys for Tots in Bay County.
Although some businesses are helping to fulfill the need, donations are still down.
"We try to give when we can because we do see a great need of it coming in here daily," said Carie Knochel, who's donating.
So far, 718 children in Bay County are signed up for Toys for Tots. The need is greater this year compared to last year. Organizations like United Bay Communitiy Credit Union have collected toys and raised $1,800 so far.
They see a number of customers come into their offices who are in need.
"It's very heartbreaking to me and to everyone who works here. The need for the kids, the people that live in this area, the people without jobs right now, it's just kind of a tough time," Knochel said.
Jeff Jarvis is the coordinator of Bay County Toys for Tots. He's accepting applications from people who want to sign up for the program. There are a lot of new faces this time around.
"I've noticed a lot of new families come in. They're saying that they would need a program like this because the economy is so much worse, some of them, their families are getting laid off from their employers," he said.
Some people we spoke with said they look forward to giving a generous gift every year.
"It makes me feel good because I've had five sons and Christmas was a special time for them, one, two gifts, whatever you're able to give filled their hearts," said Mary Ann Foco, who's donating toys.
"I personally think it's a very gratifying feeling this time of year to be able to help or know that I'm potentially helping someone give them that gift they want at Christmas morning,"Knochel said.
If you would like to donate a toy, the deadline is Dec. 16.
For more information, contact Bay County Toys For Tots: