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  Avila Community Participates in Toys for Tots Campaign  
  Kansas City, MO    
November 10, 2009

The Avila University community will welcome the 24th Marine Division to help kickoff the campus-wide Toys for Tots campaign with a 6 p.m. celebration, including the advancement of colors, on Thursday, November 19, 2009. The event will take place in the commons area of Marian Center on the Avila campus. Alumni are welcome.

Avila’s Veterans’ Service Organization (VSO) is spearheading the toy drive efforts, which will provide Christmas gifts to Kansas City children in need.

“VSO welcomes all clubs and campus organizations to join us on in supporting the Marines and the Toys for Tots program by raising money or donating new toys, beginning November 19 through December 18,” said Larry Hayes, president, VSO. “As we enter the holiday season, we want to encourage the spirit of giving and of friendship not only on the Avila campus but also throughout the entire Kansas City metro area.”

Specifically, students, faculty and staff may drop off new, unwrapped toys in collection boxes housed in Blasco Hall and Foyle Hall until December 18. Additionally, monetary donations (checks made payable to Avila University, with “VSO-Toys for Tots” noted in the memo line) may be given directly to Debbie Thornton in the Campus Life Office in the Marian Center.

“VSO celebrates the goal of Toys for Tots - delivering, through new toys at Christmas, a message of hope to less fortunate youngsters that will assist them in becoming responsible, productive, patriotic citizens,” Hayes said. “We hope others at Avila will join us in this endeavor this holiday season.”

Since its inception in 1947, United States Marine Corp Reservists and their partnering organizations have distributed more than 400 million toys to more than 188 million needy children.

For more information on Avila’s Toys for Tots campaign, please contact Larry Hayes at phone 816/500-6609, or visit


Avila University is a private, co-educational, values-based liberal arts institution founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, offering undergraduate, graduate, and adult degree programs. Avila University is located at 119th and Wornall Rd in southwest suburban Kansas City, Mo.