CHICAGO—(ENEWSPF)—November 30, 2017
By: Angie Davis
On Friday, Dec. 1 at 7pm, the Vincent Babiarz Memorial Toy Drive will be held at Murphy’s Bleachers, 3655 N. Sheffield in Chicago, to provide holiday toys for clients of Chicago’s largest food pantry, Lakeview Pantry.
After the loss of their 5-year-old son Vincent in 2010, the Babiarz family decided to honor his memory by helping children in need. In collaboration with the Friends of Lakeview Pantry, this will be the 8th annual toy drive in honor of Vincent.
Attendees are asked to bring an unwrapped toy marked “boy” or “girl” and the appropriate age. Gifts should be new in the package, with a suggested minimum retail price of $10.00 per gift. The party boasts a live auction and raffle drawing with numerous prizes, a delicious made-to-order pasta bar, and musical entertainment by cover band, Red Pop Fury. Raffle tickets can be purchased for $10 at the event. Guests who donate a toy will receive a free raffle ticket for each toy!
“The Pantry has received thousands of toys from this event over the years – all of them are handed out to the families we serve,” said Director of Development, Ashley Friend. “To be able to provide a child with a toy for the holidays is such a wonderful gift. We are grateful to the Babiarz family and the Friends of Lakeview Pantry for their years of support.”
In addition to the donated toys, the Friends of Lakeview Pantry and the Babiarz family hope to raise $15,000 through the live auction, raffle, and donation site (www.rememberingvincent.com). All monetary donations will be split between Lakeview Pantry and another organization, Coat Angels.
About Friends of Lakeview Pantry and the Babiarz Family
Friends of Lakeview Pantry is a volunteer group of local citizens, founded in 1998 by Su Bermingham and David Oliveira. Together with Emily and Christopher Haite, the group is committed to bringing joy and hope to children in the Lakeview neighborhood. What started as a small dinner party 20 years ago, has grown into a grass roots initiative to bring the joy of the holidays to families in need. Over the years, the group has shared almost 10,000 toys with thousands of families in need. This will be the Friends of Lakeview Pantry’s 20th Toy Drive and the 8th year working with the Babiarz family. Friends of Lakeview Pantry approached the Babiarz Family eight years ago with the idea of redirecting the annual toy drive in Vincent’s memory.
About Lakeview Pantry
Since 1970, Lakeview Pantry has provided nutritious food and essential social services to residents on the North Side of Chicago. Its mission is to eliminate hunger in the community by providing food to fill the basic needs of hungry people, by increasing the independence of clients through social service programming that address the root causes of poverty, and by raising awareness of hunger and poverty. The organization provides over 1.3 million meals to the hungry through 40,000 site visits every year. Lakeview Pantry operates two physical food distribution sites at 3945 N. Sheridan Road and 1414 W. Oakdale Ave., as well as a home delivery program. For more information about Lakeview Pantry and details on the new hours, please visit: www.lakeviewpantry.org.