“STEPPING UP TO SERVE”: IS A MISSISIPPI-BASED INITIATIVE TO SHOWCASE PEOPLE IN OUR COMMUNITY WHO ARE GOING THE EXTRA MILE TO GIVE BACK. THIS SEGMENT IS MADE POSSIBLE BY:
“Stepping Up To Serve” – Aiden Robinson’s Toy Drive
10-year-old Aiden Robinson has made it his personal mission to provide gifts for the children receiving treatment at the JMS Burn and Reconstructive Center in Jackson.
When Aiden was just 7-years-old, he was involved in a cooking accident that landed him at JMS.
One day, when he was having his bandages changed, the nurse told him that she would go find him a toy as a “happy”. Hours went by, but the nurse was unable to find much of anything for Aiden at the hospital.
Aiden has been a life-long patient at Batson Children’s Hospital (now Children’s of Mississippi) and felt that the kids at the JMS Burn Center needed some comfort, too.
When he was healed up and back home, he started a yearly drive raising toys, games, and stuffed animals for other patients staying at the JMS Burn Center. His grandfather, Joe Taylor, along with other friends and family, help Aiden in raising and delivering the gifts.
“This was just our way to giving back to the kids, because we’ve seen the pain Aiden went through,” said Joe.
The drive has grown significantly in size and community involvement over the past three years.
And Joe is excited for what the future will bring: “The first year we didn’t even have a wagon full, the second year a little over a wagon full, this year we had my truck full. . . Next year I’m shooting for a U-Haul truck!”
Not only did the Robinson/Taylor family think about the children, but they also donated gifts to the nurses and sent gift cards to the families staying at the JMS from out-of-town.
“It was [Aiden’s] dream to start this. We never thought we could get this big,” said Taylor.
“I think the world of him.”
Darkhorse Press will partner with Joe and Aiden in 2022 for the 4th Anniversary of the toy drive. Stay tuned for follow-up stories, and updates on how to donate.