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Gifts For Teens parades, shopping, and gift distribution returning to Green Bay

NBC 26 is once again partnering with the Green Bay Metro Fire Department for the Gifts For Teens program
Posted at 8:43 PM, Dec 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-02 22:29:00-05

GREEN BAY (NBC 26) — It's the holiday season, which is also the season of giving.

This year, NBC 26 is once again partnering with the Green Bay Metro Fire Department for the Gifts For Teens program.

Every holiday season, Green Bay firefighters collect items for Brown County teenagers in need.

During those collections, it's time for some to do their good deed.

"I run out in the cold, absolutely," Green Bay resident Cheryl Beyer said.

Beyer lives along one of the fire department's parade routes in Green Bay.

She says for all nine years she's lived there, she's made a $25 donation.

"That way, they can do what they want, get what they want for the kids," Beyer said. "Actually, I have a girl's toiletry set for this year, too."

The fire department goes along eight parade routes. Fire trucks then loop around the neighborhoods collecting gift and monetary donations during the parades.

"That has been a massive improvement in our community outreach for our program," Green Bay Metro Fire Department Lt. Chad Decker said.

Decker, who helps run the program, says gifts collected during the parades are given to the Salvation Army of Greater Green Bay.

Firefighters use the donated money to go shopping for gifts.

"It's amazing to see the turnout from the community," Decker said.

The Salvation Army then distributes the gifts to the families who signed up after all gifts are delivered by the fire department.

Director of Social Services Nan Pahl says teens make up about a quarter of the total child population — roughly 1,250 out of 5,000 — it serves.

"What we have found in past years and why this really got started is because the teen gifts are always the ones that we are the most short of," Pahl said.

That's the reason Beyer is lending a helping hand.

"Got to remember them," Beyer said.

For ways to donate or to find a parade route in your neighborhood, click here.