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updated: 12/6/2012 5:31 PM

DuPage Woodworkers create Christmas toys for needy kids

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  • Dale Gustafson (left) and Rick Ogren (right) of the DuPage Woodworkers Club dropping off the club's donation to HSP.

      Dale Gustafson (left) and Rick Ogren (right) of the DuPage Woodworkers Club dropping off the club's donation to HSP.
    Humanitarian Service Project

Ashley Jones

On November 30th, the Humanitarian Service Project (HSP) received a truckload of wooden toys from The DuPage Woodworkers Club for HSP's Christmas Offering for needy children. Rick Ogren, coordinator of the club's toy project, and Dale Gustafson, club president, dropped off the toys to HSP's site. The club has been working with HSP since 2004 and has been contributing through their toy drive for the past 3 years. HSP provides Christmas presents to those children living in poverty.

HSP currently serves 900 children with a 20-25 lb. "birthday box" each year, and will serve at least, 1,200 children with Christmas gifts this year. The DuPage Woodworkers Club has been running this toy drive for the past 6 years and this year have included six charities in the drive. The project has grown rapidly with over 4,000 toys made this year, compared to the 76 they had the first year of the drive. The club makes the toys individually, and as a group at three different yearly events where they create the toys in an assembly line. Dale stated, "Everybody has a great time making the toys each year and they are genuinely proud of their handiwork." The other charities that will benefit from this drive are Mutual Ground in Aurora, Downers Grove Family Shelter, The Lion's Club, Saint James the Apostle Church, and Midlothian School District 143 special needs program.

The Woodworkers Club believes that one learns by sharing and they show through their support of local charities. The club has a monthly meeting at St. James the Apostle Parish in Elmhurst. The club appreciates monetary and material donations to help support their project. For more information about the DuPage Woodworkers Club, visit

About The Humanitarian Service Project:

HSP's mission is to alleviate the pain and suffering that poverty creates in seniors and children living in DuPage and Kane counties, Illinois. Last year during the Christmas Offering Project, 1,616 children received gifts and 150 impoverished families received three weeks of groceries, frozen meats, and fresh produce. With the Senior Citizen Project, HSP provides a monthly food delivery and secret pal gifts to 121 low-income seniors. The Children's Birthday Project reaches the youngest underprivileged, making birthdays and Christmas truly memorable occasions for 900 children. Feed the Kids provides 100 low-income families with groceries and fresh produce during the summer months. HSP conducts an annual school supplies drive that benefited 5,200 children by giving supplies to the DuPage Back to School Fair and directly to schools and individual children.

Contact the Humanitarian Service Project:

HSP's website:

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