The Hayward Fire Department’s annual toy drive is also way below the norm. “We have received less than 50 percent of what we normally get in donations,” said firefighter Matt Buckingham, who has led the drive for the past decade.
Over the course of the year, the firefighter’s union raises money through fundraisers to help buy the holiday toys, but with the lack of donations, they will probably have to dig deeper into their coffers to make up the difference.
The toys are delivered to local nonprofits that in turn distribute them to Hayward children who may not have received gifts this year.
It’s not too late: New toys can be donated at any of Hayward’s nine fire stations.