ILLINOIS (WICS/WRSP) — Friday, the Joy of Sharing charity event collected more than $7,000 in Springfield and over $700 in Danville.
"We thought it would be neat to come down here and give some money for some of these today, so we did give money,” donor Linda Earls said.
One of the organizations that benefited was the American Red Cross. Money raised Friday went toward helping Taylorville tornado victims.
"If this was us or we were in this position, how would we want to be helped?” Jeff Wahlfeld with the American Red Cross said. "What it means to these people is they know that they're not alone. That they have the support of the community, the support of the Red Cross and many other multi-faceted agencies out there."
Our Joy of Sharing fundraiser was held at Walmarts in both Springfield and in Danville.
Francis Burba used to live in Taylorville and offered a donation at the Springfield drop-off.
"Most people don't understand, a lot of these people do not have insurance and are lucky if they got somebody that can take them in and put them up,” Burba said.
Donations were also collected for the Ronald McDonald House, Central Illinois Foodbank and Toys for Tots.
"I'm just Santa's helper,” retired Marine Gunnery Sergeant Thomas Altevogt said. “I think it really means a lot to them, being able to open something up for Christmas."
Some said the giving is really what the holidays are all about.
"It's right before Christmas and the Taylorville people, some of them lost everything and that would be really sad,” Earls said. “So, it's a good cause to help them try to get back on their feet.”
For current donation totals and links to donate, click here.