The Surrey Christmas Bureau has a new location and is preparing to start taking registrations tomorrow.
The toy depot is currently being set up at 7404 King George Blvd., in the King's Cross Shopping Centre in Newton. The 8,000square-foot office space suits the charity's needs perfectly.
"It's wonderful to have our space so we can now begin to set up for registration," said K.C. Gilroy, co-ordinator of the Surrey Christmas Bureau.
Families can begin to register for the Christmas Bureau as of Friday, Nov. 9, at 10 a.m. Registration hours will be Mondays through Saturdays, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
After seeing a newspaper story about the bureau's need for a space and the fact it's becoming tougher to find a large space each year for only two months, a local company realized it could help.
GWL Realty Advisors offered up the empty office space to serve as the toy depot this year.
"We are very pleased to have GWL Realty Advisors step up as our community partners," said Allan Keel, board chair of the Surrey Christmas Bureau. "Having this excellent centrally located site will help us assist a large number of families this season."
The Christmas Bureau's mission is to provide toys to Surrey families who otherwise couldn't afford Christmas presents for their children. The organization helps a wide variety of people, from the working poor to newly arrived immigrants.
Families are registered at the toy depot, and must provide proof of their identity and income level. The age and gender of the children are also noted during registration so they can be matched up with age-and gender-appropriate gifts.
Just before Christmas, the families will return to pick up gifts and food vouchers.
Gilroy said at least 2,000 families are expected to register for help this year, a record number.
For those who want to donate to the bureau, the depot will begin accepting new toys and some used toys that are in excellent condition as of Nov. 15. Before then, people can drop off donations at Surrey fire halls.
Toys and gifts are always in short supply for both teenagers and babies and appropriate items are particularly requested
Businesses or individuals who want to sponsor a family are encouraged to contact the Christmas Bureau's office at 604-5819623.