SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — San Francisco firefighters were holding a toy drive Wednesday evening focused on collecting ethnic dolls to hand out to children over the holidays.

The Dolls of Ethnicity Drive was taking place from 5:30 to 9 p.m. at Don Ramon’s Mexican Restaurante at 225 11th St. in the city’s South of Market neighborhood.

The goal of the event, which would be attended by District 5 supervisor-elect London Breed, was to gather the dolls to donate to the African American Art and Culture Complex for its holiday party, where about 500 children will be present.

Event coordinator Jill Peeler said dolls of non-white ethnicities are often hard to find in stores.

“There’ll be like six African-American dolls and 100 white dolls,” Peeler said.

The San Francisco Firefighters Toy Program, organized by the local firefighters’ union, gives about 200 dolls to the Western Addition-based art and culture complex annually. Peeler said that this year, “we wanted to represent the community more than we have been” in previous years.

There will be a raffle and a Santa Claus at this evening’s event, which costs $15 for people who show up with a doll to donate and $25 for those without one. Peeler said she expects at least 100 people to attend.

“We’re hoping the rain doesn’t scare the people away,” she said.

The San Francisco Firefighters Toy Program reaches about 40,000

local children annually during the holiday season, according to fire officials.

More information about the event and the toy program can be found online at

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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