UPPER CHICHESTER – It may be a little early to break out the Christmas tunes but the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 654 is asking the community’s help to help make the holidays brighter for those less fortunate. From now through Saturday, Nov. 13, the IBEW is collecting new, unwrapped toys for a distribution extravaganza featuring 93.3 WMMR’s Jacky Bam Bam as toys are distributed throughout the Delco community. It all started out with one Marine and a pandemic food drive. When the pandemic hit and everything was shut down, IBEW members made a choice. “We were shocked,” IBEW business manager Paul Mullen said. “For 654, instead of taking 2020 and feeling sorry for ourselves, we decided to give back.” One way they did that was by providing meals for frontline employees in the Crozer Health system and at Riddle Hospital. They also held a food drive in June 2020. “I couldn’t get over the generosity of the whole community,” Mullen said. The union was able to collect and distribute more than 30 trucks full of food while raising $15,000 for more. They had wanted to do something for Christmas but were unable to do so. Then, this year, IBEW member and Marine Fred Ries stepped forward. Ries, who’s been in the IBEW for three years, served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 2011 through 2017. When he was in the Reserves, he participated in the Toys for Tots with his fellow Marines at the Folsom center. And, he continued to collect toys to take them over for the Marine distribution. “I’ve done this myself,” Ries said. “I’d go down there. Every year, they already had the toys. Volunteers would separate the toys. So, I started doing my own toy collections for them.” As he was finishing his Reserves, he began his apprenticeship with the IBEW, where Mullen asked him to start a Veterans Committee. “I got the word out and guys started bringing me toys,” Ries said. And, the thought came to him to make it bigger. “One of the first things I said to (Mullen was) ‘I’ve been doing this Toys for Tots, if you get the whole local behind it, it’ll just be that much more better,” Ries said. And, now, there’s a collection box stationed at the IBEW hall. “It worked out great,” Ries said. “The union has a lot of members. We’re able to get this whole thing going.” And, everything stays local. “All the toys we collect will be for children in Delaware County,” Ries said. “It goes directly back into our community. It takes a lot of the burden off the parents who maybe can’t afford to get the kids everything. It’s for parents as much as the kids.” He said those wanting to donate and those wanting to receive a toy can go to toysfortots.org for information about campaigns in their area. On Nov. 13, the public as well as IBEW members and families are welcome to the toy drive event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. “You can come and drop the toys off and say hi,” Ries said. In the meantime, Mullen said the community can drop toys off at the IBEW hall during business hours, although they’re welcome to drop them off at night or Saturdays as there’s usually people there. “We can always adjust our schedule,” Mullen said. For Toys for Tots, IBEW 654 will be collecting new, unwrapped toys through Saturday, Nov. 13 at their hall at 3729 Chichester Ave. in Boothwyn, from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. For any questions or to make other arrangements, call the hall at 610-494-2820.

ByToys Daily Editor

Nov 13, 2021

Many toys together with eight bikes are collected for “Toys For Tots.”

UPPER CHICHESTER – It might be just a little early to interrupt out the Christmas tunes however the Worldwide Brotherhood of Electrical Employees Native 654 is asking the group’s assist to assist make the vacations brighter for these much less lucky.

At the moment, the IBEW is gathering new, unwrapped toys for a distribution extravaganza that includes 93.3 WMMR’s Jacky Bam Bam as toys are distributed all through the Delco group.

It began out with one Marine and a pandemic meals drive.

When the pandemic hit and every little thing was shut down, IBEW members made a selection.

“We were shocked,” IBEW Enterprise Supervisor Paul Mullen stated. “For 654, instead of taking 2020 and feeling sorry for ourselves, we decided to give back.”

A method they did that was by offering meals for frontline workers within the Crozer Well being system and at Riddle Hospital. In addition they held a meals drive in June 2020.

“I couldn’t get over the generosity of the whole community,” Mullen stated. The union was in a position to accumulate and distribute greater than 30 vans stuffed with meals whereas elevating $15,000 for extra.

They’d wished to do one thing for Christmas however had been unable to take action. Then, this 12 months, IBEW member and Marine Fred Ries stepped ahead.

Ries, who’s been within the IBEW for 3 years, served within the U.S. Marine Corps from 2011 by way of 2017.

When he was within the Reserves, he participated within the Toys for Tots along with his fellow Marines on the Folsom heart. And, he continued to gather toys to take them over for the Marine distribution.

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“I’ve done this myself,” Ries stated. “I’d go down there. Every year, they already had the toys. Volunteers would separate the toys. So, I started doing my own toy collections for them.”

As he was ending his Reserves, he started his apprenticeship with the IBEW, the place Mullen requested him to start out a Veterans Committee.

“I got the word out and guys started bringing me toys,” Ries stated.

And, the thought got here to him to make it greater.

“One of the first things I said to (Mullen was) ‘I’ve been doing this Toys for Tots, if you get the whole local behind it, it’ll just be that much more better,” Ries stated.

Now, there’s a group field stationed on the IBEW corridor.

“It worked out great,” Ries stated. “The union has a lot of members. We’re able to get this whole thing going.”

And, every little thing stays native.

“All the toys we collect will be for children in Delaware County,” Ries stated. “It goes directly back into our community. It takes a lot of the burden off the parents who maybe can’t afford to get the kids everything. It’s for parents as much as the kids.”

He stated these eager to donate and people eager to obtain a toy can go to toysfortots.org for details about campaigns of their space.

At the moment, the general public in addition to IBEW members and households are welcome to the toy drive occasion from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

“You can come and drop the toys off and say hi,” Ries stated.

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Within the meantime, Mullen stated the group can drop toys off on the IBEW corridor throughout enterprise hours, though they’re welcome to drop them off at night time or Saturdays as there’s often individuals there.

“We can always adjust our schedule,” Mullen stated.

The IBEW members additionally thanked the Fraternal Order of Police and state Reps. Craig Williams, R-160 of Higher Chichester, Chris Quinn, R-168 of Middletown and Jennifer O’Mara, D-165, of Springfield for serving to with the toy drive by gathering toys and having assortment bins of their workplaces.

For Toys for Tots, IBEW 654 might be gathering new, unwrapped toys at their corridor at 3729 Chichester Ave. in Boothwyn, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For any questions or to make different preparations, name the corridor at 610-494-2820.

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