How did it start?
Impressed by the pioneer efforts of Major Bill Hendricks, and yet aware of unmet needs, the Los Angeles Fire Department and LAFD SERTOMA Club started a local "Toys For Needy Children" program in 1976. The program was an enormous success.
In 1992, a cooperative decision was made to develop a regional toy drive among Southern California Fire Departments. An advisory council of firefighters and staff from KABC-TV now oversee what is known as the "Spark of Love" Toy Drive.
How does the program work?
Through your generosity, Spark of Love provides a new unwrapped toy or sporting good to a child who would otherwise go without a gift this holiday season. Spark of Love works in concert, not in competition, with other charitable programs to fulfill the dreams of needy Southern California children.
Recipients are identified in advance by established community and child service organizations. Families experiencing a sudden catastrophic loss are also aided by Spark of Love. When possible, the local Fire Station crew (occasionally accompanied by Santa Claus) makes a discreet and dignified special delivery to these deserving children.
Within the City of Los Angeles, the LAFD provides logistical support for the program, while SERTOMA offers the mechanism necessary to receive tax deductible contributions, make corporate solicitations, and coordinate volunteers.
Firefighters distribute toys - and more
The hands-on interaction made possible by Spark of Love provides a positive role model for children, builds goodwill within our community, and allows Firefighters the opportunity to reinforce important life safety practices during the holiday season.
How you can help!
Our program's success relies solely upon the goodwill of people like you. Your donation of a new unwrapped toy or sporting good will be gratefully accepted at any Fire Station in Southern California prior to Christmas Day. Those living in Los Angeles can click here to find their Neighborhood Fire Station.
If getting to your local Fire Station is not convenient, we welcome you to make a secure on-line donation or visit our Spark of Love partners, who have graciously offered to join us in collecting toys during the holiday season:
LAFD's Spark of Love Hotline for more information:
contact their local Fire Department for guidance.