Les Schwab toy drive helps 700 families on Christmas Eve

SEATTLE -  Hundreds of volunteers turned into elves and dozens became Santa with the help of makeup artists. The mission was to help 700 families across Western Washington.

“We help families who don’t get help from anybody else,” Doug Moeller with Forgotten Children’s Fund said.

The Forgotten Children’s Fund and Les Schwab worked together on the huge endeavor. They broke up into teams and hit the road to surprise local kids.

This year Les Schwab says thanks to the community they collected 40,000 toys that’s about a million dollars worth.

“Every store collects toys from their own communities so all the toys stay local,” Brett Clark with Les Schwab said.

Q13 News followed along one team as they door knocked families on Sunday.

Among them were two sisters who couldn’t believe Santa showed up in their living room. When the presents came out so did the shrieks of excitement. After the first round of presents the kids learned there was more.

The kids received bikes and even their parents got something. The family says they appreciate the kindness they’ve been shown by strangers

“With three little ones it’s hard for us so this is a blessing for us,” said one mom.

It’s a sentiment expressed by all the other families who got the special visit. Parents say it isn’t about the toys but how the gifts made them feel.