VICTORVILLE — Hot meals, hygienic items and blankets are some of the items Toys of Eden, a community service organization, provides to the homeless on Seventh Street. Store owner Eden McFarland, 8, works with veteran outreach group In the Trenches to generate the funding for the daily meal service.
It is important to help people who are struggling in life and help the kids have joy too.
The idea for Toys of Eden came about when McFarland was in Pre-K and saw that her classmates had no toys for Christmas. Her and her mother, Nora McFarland, provided gifts for her classmates and a Santa Claus. They have continued this tradition for 5 years and last Christmas they were able to provide 1,134 gifts through their door to door giveaway.
Neighboring church House of Worship had previously provided meals for the homeless for the past 10 years, however, at the onset of the COVID pandemic, the service had to be discontinued.
“Toys of Eden picked up in providing the meals,” said House of Worship Pastor Gregory Malloy. “The toy store used to be the feeding site.”
Toys of Eden has recently partnered with In the Trenches, a veteran owned organization to provide monthly barbeques. Toy sales and volunteer hours keep the meal program going since it is not state funded. The organizations have fed 134 people during the monthly barbeques.
Both organizations will have a booth at the upcoming HD Where Ya At Business Expo, June 26th, at the Adelanto Stadium. In the Trenches co-founder Darren Shine says that the booth will have items for sale with the proceeds going towards helping veterans.
“We give you a hand out because you’re worth more than a hand up,” said Shine. “We’re here to help the veterans get off the street — get their lives together.”
Toys of Eden is located at 15584 Seventh Street, Victorville, CA 92395. Store hours are Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
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