In 2010 Daniel Alvarado, son of Colorado State Patrol Corporal Ivan Alvarado, was 6-years-old when his brother was diagnosed with leukemia. That same year he decided to start Cancer Fighters to the Rescue, an annual Toy Drive for Children's Hospital Oncology Department in Aurora.
His first year, Alvarado and his family collected about 300 toys. Now the drive is in its 13th year, and they delivered more than 2,500 toys Monday to the Oncology department at the hospital.
"This is important to me because I knew what it was like to spend Christmas in the hospital," says Alvarado. "I saw what my brother had to go through and it was really tough on me and my family, so I wanted to bring Christmas to the kids that were going to be stuck there on my favorite holiday."
Today, Alvarado has numerous drop locations - including a few at Colorado State Patrol buildings - and a Go Fund Me account to ensure the toy drive grows year after year to help children in need during the holiday season.
"To the CSP community, I want to say thank you for the amount of support you have given me since day one," said Alvarado. "None of this could be accomplished without you guys, and I appreciate every single one of you who have been there for me."
Alvarado says he loves to see the toy drive continue to grow every single year with new volunteers, and he is excited to see what the future holds with Cancer Fighters to the Rescue.
"I love seeing the community come together," said Alvarado. "It's nice to see that one small person can make a difference in the lives of many."