JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Wolfson Children's Hospital collected toys Friday for their patients during what it calls its off-season.
Toys often pile in the hospital during the holidays, but the summertime gets slow. So the hospital held its third annual Christmas in July Toy and Clothing Drive.
Tate Towsley, 13, has been at Wolfson for two weeks and she's excited to see some toys rolling in.
"In my room all I do is sit there," said Towsley, who has cystic fibrosis. "So when you have games and activities, it helps a lot because it's something to do when you are bored."
Wolfson treats more than 75,000 children each year. New, unwrapped toys collected from the toy drive will restock the hospital's playrooms and help hospitalized children celebrate birthdays and other special occasions throughout the year.
Something new this year, the hospital also asked the community to donate clothes, which will go to patients who often need them.
Givers like Aaron Albritton said this is especially important this time of year.
"They are here because they have to be, not because they've chosen to be," said Albritton, of RPM Automotive. "And the families that are here with them are missing a lot of their that normal family summertime thing."
The Jacksonville Axemen were at Wolfson to help unload gifts for the children, and while they were there they stopped by the hospital room of 9-year-old Kate Amato. Her dad was a rugby player in Jacksonville. She is at Wolfson because she has stage four cancer.
"Personally, I'm a little jealous to give you this because it's the glitter foam memory kit that I really wanted," one of JacKeeley "So I hope you'll get to enjoy it. So that's there for you as well."
The hospital collected 4,600 toys Friday compared to 1,300 toys last year.
The hospital is also hosting a Virtual Christmas in July Toy Drive and is accepting online financial donations to purchase developmentally appropriate toys for special-needs kids at Wolfson.
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