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Victoria woman starts Totes of Love drive to help low income, homeless

By JR Ortega
Oct. 3, 2013 at 5:03 a.m.


Drop-Off Locations

To donate items, visit Starbucks, 7105 N. Navarro St., between Friday and Sunday, and again between Oct. 11-13. If you're interested in helping set up a donation site or learning more, email Toya Stone at tparkman.stone@gmail.com.

What is needed

•  Toilet paper

•  Paper towels

•  Bath towels

•  Shampoo/ conditioner

• Bars of soap

• Deodorant

• Hairbrushes

• Shirts (all sizes)

• Fleece blankets

• Jackets (all sizes)

• Socks (all sizes)

• Crayons

• Bibles

• Bottled water

• Paper folders (with brads)

•  Disposable razors

• Diapers

• Feminine hygiene products

• Shaving cream

The idea of how to help others came to Toya Stone when she realized there was a need.

Stone, 27, of Victoria, had seen impoverished families through outreach work with Parkway Church. She realized that donation sites where people could donate the bare essentials were needed and could change lives.

And that's how Totes of Love, which is in its first year, came to life.

"It's just a ministry that I thought of," she said. "God had put it in my head to do that this year. My whole message is for us to serve each other."

For now, there is one donation site at Starbucks, 7105 N. Navarro St., from Friday to Sunday and again from Oct. 11-13.

While the donation sites are limited, Stone said she knows of other businesses and churches who want to help.

By November, she hopes to have several more donation sites established so more totes can be delivered in December.

The ministry is looking for anything from personal hygiene products to clothing, Stone said.

To deliver the totes, Stone and her ministry team will go to areas in Victoria where low-income families and the homeless live.

The team will stuff the totes in October for a November delivery, and there will be a November stuffing for a December delivery.

"I want my team to go out there and personally hand out the totes," she said. "That's what love is about."

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