WOODLAND PARK, New Jersey – An 8-year-old boy from New Jersey is doing his part for kids in hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico this holiday season.
Jayden Perez has collected more than 1,000 toys in just a couple of weeks for kids in Puerto Rico. The third-grader came up with the idea to ask people in his community to donate toys to children affected by Hurricane Maria.
His mother, Ana Rosado, said the idea started as him wanting to donate toys, but he quickly realized he didn’t have enough toys to donate to all the kids on the island.
In an effort to get more people involved, Jayden took to Facebook, that Rosado shared last month.
Jayden explains what he’s trying to do while holding a cardboard sign asking people to donate toys.
“Kids lost a lot of their toys, and now they don’t have any,” Jayden says. “So can you donate one toy, from the bottom of my heart and the bottom of your heart?”
The family held a toy drive December 3 and the response was overwhelming. Jayden’s mom said she expected to get 50 or so toys, but ended up with way more than that. They also raised even more money through a GoFundMe page to get even more toys to the island.
The 8-year-old’s simple idea has gone viral. With boxes of toys even being donated by the NBA.
Since the toy drive has gotten so much attention, the family is planning to head to Puerto Rico to deliver all the toys in person. Their visit will coincide with the Puerto Rican holiday of Three Kings Day,January 6.