A mountain of Christmas presents is piled up in a garage in Papamoa.

Everything about the gifts has been donated; the toys, the wrapping paper and even the time to wrap and sort them.

Two strangers, who met via a community Facebook page, are busy sifting through Facebook messages deciding who will be receiving the donated presents.

The Bay of Plenty Times visited Jason Lunn and Anita Lewis as they were finalising their last-minute toy run.


"You hear some really sad stories when you start doing this," Lewis says.

Lunn sits next to Lewis calling out addresses of where the presents need to be taken.

He is the man behind the toy run after he used spontaneity and the power of social media to bring Christmas cheer to children in need this Christmas.

The logging truck driver put a request on two Tauranga community Facebook pages on December 17, asking for donations of second-hand toys which he would pick up in his van and drop off to children in need.

Lunn said he lost count of how many messages he received from people wanting to get involved.

Enough toys and presents were donated by families around Tauranga to cover the floor of Lewis' lounge room.

"People just gave and gave and gave," Lunn said.

A range of donations were given to the cause, from bikes and scooters to DVD players and cuddly soft toys.


Another post was then put on Facebook asking for nominations of children who were deserving of the gifts.

Lunn and Lewis began delivering presents to children yesterday afternoon and would continue in the days leading up to Christmas.

Lunn said he felt "really overwhelmed" by the community spirit.

He hoped the toy run would be an annual appeal and said it was important for people to remember what recycling could mean to those less fortunate.

"If you've got unwanted toys there are definitely people out there who will want them."

Lewis, the self-proclaimed "head Christmas paper wrapper," offered to help Lunn sort and wrap each gift, which took two days.

"I'm just really looking forward to seeing the kids' faces. I'm probably going to burst into tears," Lewis said.