Our youth, our future: Charlotte Kirby

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BRIDGEPORT, W.Va. (WDTV) - For many, the holiday season is a time for love, laughter, and making cheerful memories.

In addition to her charitable work, Charlotte stays busy by playing football, and doing gymnastics and competitive cheer leading.

"It's a happy time of year, everyone should be happy," said Charlotte Kirby.

Many kids look forward to receiving gifts on Christmas, but nine-year-old Charlotte looks forward to giving them.

"Our children were taught about the tradition of St. Nick and giving back; we encourage them to give back each year at Christmastime," said Charlotte's mom, Belynda.

When she was just four years old, Charlotte made an unusual request: she wanted to collect toys to give to kids in need.

"I was absolutely blown away, but I didn't understand what she wanted at first; she kept saying she wanted people to come to our house to sell them toys," Belynda explained.

Belynda continued, "She wanted parents to be able to "shop" for their children at Christmas, when normally they couldn't afford too."

For the past six years, Charlotte has managed to collect over a thousand toys each Christmas. She sets up giant boxes at different businesses throughout Harrison, Marion, and Monongalia counties.

Charlotte's mother explained that this year's collection is more crucial than ever, as several local organizations are unable to hold their usual toy drives.

Charlotte loves being able to help parents give their children a magical Christmas and hopes to keep this tradition going for as long as she can.

"I'm glad that other kids get to have toys and that they get to play with them, it makes me happy," Charlotte said.

Belynda says that when Charlotte grows up, she wants to keep helping people: Charlotte's dream is to work for the Clarksburg Mission and to be a pastor.

The last day for donations is December 21st. Need a donation picked up? Call 757-376-7767 for more information.

Drop-off locations:
-Bridgeport:
• Cooper Law Offices
• Bridgeport Physical Therapy
• Rominger Dental
• Meagher's Irish Pub
• Enliven Chiropractic
• Bridgeport United Methodist Church
-Clarksburg:
• Bad Lizard Granite
• Salon 1200
• Federal Building
• Gorilla Strength Gym
• Mountain State Physical Therapy
-Fairmont:
• Astro Buick GMC
-Morgantown:
•Express Employment
•Seamon Law Offices