Local News

Cortland United Way gets donations from state holiday drive – 410 kids get toys


Governor Kathy Hochul announced the completion of New York’s annual statewide donation drive to benefit families in need across the state. Donations of new unwrapped toys, coats and school supplies were collected to assist community-based organizations during the holiday giving season.

“As we near the holidays, we are eager to distribute these gifts throughout the state,” Governor Hochul said. “I want to thank those who donated to make this drive a success; because of your generosity, families across New York will be able to have a happy holiday. After hardship exacerbated by the pandemic, these gifts will make all the difference to those in need this season.”

United Ways in the Upstate area put their elf hats on and distributed 3,300 gifts. Christella Yonta, Executive Director of the United Way for Cortland County said the local office called on several programs with lists of kids asking for toys and shopped for all of the kids left – 410.

Toys were distributed to rural areas as well with Cincinnatus and Marathon helping to get them to households to be wrapped for Christmas morning.

Interim CEO of United Way of New York State Keith Barsuhn said, “United Way of New York State is proud to partner with Governor Hochul and Wal-Mart to convert the funds and distribute the toys that brighten the spirit of children less fortunate. Thanks to our strong network of local United Ways and their relationships with service providers, along with our 211NY helpline system, we have the tools needed to know where children and families are most in need, just as we demonstrated during the height of the pandemic.”

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