There are countless people in Flandreau and the surrounding areas that would say the Flandreau Volunteer Fire Department and its crew of dedicated volunteers are heroes for what they do - risking life and limb to protect the things that we treasure most - you can now add the unfortunate residents of the Sanford’s Children Hospital to the that list.
Last Thursday, the FVFD delivered over $1,500 worth of toys, as well as several other donations, to the Sanford Children’s Hospital in Sioux Falls, better known as ‘The Castle’.
Assistant Chief of the FVFD, Chris Neises, started collecting the money for the toys over a year ago when he decided to set out collection boxes around town to raise money for this cause, an effort that culminated in hundreds of smiles when they toys were delivered late last week.
Neises says he knows too many people that have had children who have had to stay at The Castle, leading him to start this donation effort.
But the journey has just begun; the FVFD plans on doing this at least once a year as well as continue to get more involved.
“We would like to do this once a year and get more involved in the Children’s Miracle Network down there,” Neises said.
Children’s Miracle Network is nationwide program that raises funds and awareness for children’s hospitals across North America. They hold annual dance marathons as well as collect donations from several national food chains such as IHOP’s National Pancake day and Dairy Queen’s Miracle Treat Day.
Although the FVFD’s donation stands well short of the major donations of those on the national scale, the amount of lives positively impacted by the $1,500 worth of toys they donated to the young kids at The Castle cannot be compared.
The eight members of the FVFD that traveled to Sioux Falls to help drop off the toys were given a full tour of the hospital including the clinic area and some of the exam rooms.
If you are interested in helping the FVFD in their efforts, keep a lookout for donation boxes around town or contact any one of the fire fighters for more information on how you can help.