Donations made to 13abc's 'Hope for the Holidays' toy drive help hundreds of area families

FINDLAY, Ohio (WTVG) - Paul and Lizabeth Kleman know what it means to fall on hard times around the holidays.

"It was very difficult, but we kept going and our faith in God—God kept us going," said Lizabeth Kleman.

Just a few years ago the family of four was in a tough spot when Paul found himself suddenly unemployed. Strapped for cash, the Kleman's were worried about buying Christmas presents for their kids.

"You want to be able to provide for your kids, you know, especially at a time like this and don't want them to go back from Christmas break and tell their friends they didn't get anything," said Paul Kleman.

Initially reluctant to ask for help the couple says they eventually connected with The Salvation Army in Findlay.

"You're doing all you can, but when you're out of a job and you can't do anything it's nice to have agencies like this to fill that need," said Paul Kleman.

Come Christmas morning the Kleman's say they were overwhelmed to see gifts they otherwise wouldn't have been able to buy.

"The kids were jumping for joy," said Lizabeth Kleman. "I mean they were so happy and pleased that they were able to receive something."

The Kleman's aren't the only ones who've had their holiday made by The Salvation Army. Each year the group connects hundreds of area families with donated presents and food. It's all done thanks to your generosity.

"We couldn't do what we do without the help of the community," said Major Dianna Morales with The Salvation Army of Findlay. "People care and that's just an amazing story in itself."

With Christmas fast approaching leaders hope the community delivers again and helps make the holiday bright for those in need.

"It has really made our holiday," said Paul Kleman. "I wish I could say, 'Thank you,' to the person, shake their hands."

The Salvation Army in Findlay--along with the Bowling Green location, Franklin Park Mall and 13abc studios--will accept donations Friday as a part of "13abc's Hope for the Holidays Drive-Thru Bash." You can stop by either location and drop off a new, unwrapped toy between 5:00 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.