GCC Police Help Needy Students

MICHELLE GHOUKASIAN
El Vaquero Staff Writer

The toy and food drive hosted by the GCC Police Department, which began on Nov. 18 and will continue until Dec. 20, strives every year to help needy students on campus.

According to Nidal Kobaissi, police specialist, this is the eighth year of the toy and food drive and each year it has become more and more successful. Throughout the eight years, over 100 students who demonstrated some kind of financial need have been helped.

The majority of applicants are composed of students with children, however students who come from poor families may also be helped.

“Everything we receive goes to the college community directly,” said Kobaissi.

The police department is collecting toys, canned food and monetary donations. They use the money to buy more toys.

So far, about 15 toys have been collected, a few hundred dollars and about 30 to 40 cans of food. There is no set goal on how much they need until they receive applications.

“Every year we’ve helped all the applicants that needed us,” said Kobaissi. “We make sure it’s worthwhile for them.”

The applications require information such as the student’s college goals, their income and their tax returns. The police department then verifies their income to make sure the proceeds go to the needy.

“The toy drive was my idea eight years ago,” said Kobaissi. “Then the department decided it was a good idea. I have been coordinating it every year, but the whole department is involved in making it successful.”

The drive is advertised on campus. Donations can be brought to the police office, or contributors can call (818) 240-1000 ext. 5925, to have donations picked up.