The Institute for the Development of African American Youth really grasped the idea of Tony’s Metro Magic this year.
It’s not about looking good to our advertisers and it’s not about a tax deduction. It’s about using our pull as the most-read newspaper in Philadelphia to reach out to you to help us collect toys and distribute them to kids in neighborhoods in Philadelphia we’re frequently in and cover in our pages.
And it’s also about continuging the legacy of Tony Metcalf, our beloved former editor-in-chief who passed away earlier this year. Metro Magic was his favorite initiative at Metro; that’s why we renamed our drive in his honor.
“The toys are great. I see a lot of kids here, and they’re happy and playing,” said parent Hope Johnson at IDAAY’s holiday party. “It’s a blessing for them to have Tony’s legacy still going on, really a blessing.
Metro donated a number of toys to IDAAY that were distributed to children who participate in the non-profit’s programming. Their annual holiday party was held Saturday in North Philadelphia and Metro was there.
This is 12-year-old Johnnie Leca’s first year at IDAAY. He said he’s had fun meeting new friends and attending the party.
“I like the way that they set the Christmas party up and I like the way that they set the Christmas presents up,” he said. “I think the kids are really going to be happy with the gifts.”
India Black, 13, does dance programming at IDAAY.
“It’s just a chance for me to learn new dances and experience new things,” she said.
Of the gifts, she said: “I think people are excited for the gifts because everybody works really hard so they deserve it.
Several of our toys were also donated to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. And more toys are coming in that will be picked up by Toys for Tots for distribution this and next year.
IDAAY’s executive director Archye Leacock started the non-profit with eight programs for young people. more than 20 years ago
“Without a doubt, we are extremely appreciative of Metro selecting us as one of the organizations. Our young people are deserving of it. This is one way that we are giving to them but their obligation is now to give back to others in their communities.”
Additional reporting by Charles Mostoller