Hometown Holiday Toy And Book Drive To Benefit Children Of Domestic Violence Survivors In Northeast Michigan

ALPENA, MI — Verizon Wireless today announced the kickoff of its 2010 Verizon Wireless “Hometown Holiday Toy and Book Drive.” The drive will provide gifts for children living in the emergency shelter at Shelter Inc., a domestic violence organization serving Alpena, Alcona, Iosco, Montmorency and Presque Isle counties. The Alpena News is a supporting media sponsor.

Donations of new toys and books can be made now through Friday, December 10, at the Verizon Wireless Communications Store in Alpena at 2389 U.S. 23 South. The store is open Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Donations can also be made at The Cellular Connection, a Verizon Wireless authorized retailer with participating stores in these locations:

  • 1495 Michigan Highway 32, Alpena: 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Monday through Friday; 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday; closed on Sunday
  • 100 South Morenci Avenue, Mio: 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday; closed on Sunday
  • 120 East Newman, East Tawas: 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Monday through Friday; 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., Saturday; closed Sunday
  • 5149 North U.S. Highway 23, Oscoda: 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Monday through Friday; 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., Saturday; closed Sunday

Along with new books, donated gifts may include items such as coloring books, crayons, board games, dolls, action figures, video games and video game systems, arts and crafts kits and G-rated DVDs. All donations should be packaged, but unwrapped.

“Children living in our shelter need love and support year-round, but the holidays can be a particularly tough time for our families,” said Sandra Pilgrim-Lewis, executive director of Shelter Inc. “We are pleased that Verizon Wireless and its customers have come forward to help make their holidays a little brighter this year.”

Shelter, Inc. has been providing emergency shelter and supportive services for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault since 1978. The agency is dedicated to empowering survivors to achieve self-sufficient and violence free lives. Services include emergency shelter and 24-hour crisis intervention, individual and group counseling, legal and personal advocacy, long-term supportive housing assistance and life skills management.

“We hope these donations put a smile on the face of every child who receives a gift,” said David Rapson, district manager-retail sales, Verizon Wireless Communications Stores in northern Michigan. “Verizon Wireless is committed to the communities where our customers and employees live and work. By making a small donation of a new toy or book, people can help make the holiday season special for a child. We invite northeast Michiganders to join us in this important drive.”

About Verizon Wireless in Michigan In Michigan, Verizon Wireless has more than 2,100 employees and 65 company-owned retail locations in more than 40 cities, including Allen Park, Alpena, Alpine Twp., Ann Arbor, Auburn Hills, Battle Creek, Bay City, Brighton, Burton, Canton, Clinton Twp., Dearborn, Detroit, East Lansing, Farmington Hills, Fenton, Flint, Fort Gratiot, Gaylord, Grand Rapids, Grandville, Highland Park, Holland, Jackson, Kentwood, Lake Orion, Lansing, Livonia, Midland, Monroe, Muskegon, Northville, Novi, Okemos, Petoskey, Pontiac, Portage, Rochester Hills, Royal Oak, Saginaw, St. Clair Shores, St. Joseph, Southfield, Taylor, Traverse City, Troy, Utica, Warren and Westland.

About Verizon Wireless Verizon Wireless operates the nation’s most reliable and largest wireless voice and 3G data network, serving more than 93 million customers. Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with more than 79,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE, NASDAQ: VZ) and Vodafone (LSE, NASDAQ: VOD). For more information, visit www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.