8:31 PM PST, December 31, 2012
The UC Irvine Police Department collected more than 700 stuffed animals and toys for the holidays during its 2012 Teddy Bear Drive.
The gifts were delivered in December to medical centers and nonprofits throughout Orange County, including Children's Hospital Orange County, Heritage House in Costa Mesa and UCI Medical Center.
The department thanked the organizations that hosted drop-off sites around the campus, including the BioSci Student Assn., American Campus Communities, UCI Athletics, the Bren Events Center and the UCI Medical Center.
Those groups also helped deliver the toys, acting as elves for UCI police's Administrative Specialist Joe Bessolo, who organized the drive and distribution, according to a release.
"There were many happy faces and lots of smiles and joy among the recipients of the presents at all of the locations," UCI Police Chief Paul Henisey said in a prepared statement. "Your efforts made a wonderful difference for hundreds of children."
— Jeremiah Dobruck