Giving is the best gift of all

Youngster recycles bottles to get money to help less fortunate

Maureen Coulter
Published on December 26, 2015

Nine-year-old JD MacKenzie of Vernon Bridge has collected and recycled $210 worth of bottles to help make Christmas a little brighter for some Island children. 

©Guardian photo by Maureen Coulter

JD MacKenzie of Vernon Bridge, has been collecting and recycling bottles over the past year to buy Christmas presents for children in need across Prince Edward Island.

The nine-year-old said he is doing this for all the boys and girls who may not have anything to open Christmas morning.

"There are lots of kids out there who don't get any toys on Christmas," said JD.

JD collected and recycled $210 worth of bottles over the past year from home and from friends and family.

JD did this last Christmas, but started late in the year so only ended up collecting and recycling $40 worth of bottles.

With a whole year to collect and save for this season, he put $200 toward eight gifts for boys and girls and spent the extra $10 on himself.

"I bought a pack of hockey cards as a reward," said JD, who is a big hockey fan.

He donated the gifts to the Toys for Tots program run by Ocean 100. This year, the annual campaign raised more than $30,000 in toys with more than $7,000 in cash donations and helped over 300 Island families this Christmas.

Donning a Santa hat, JD proudly showed the toys he picked out with the help of his mother, Jodie MacKenzie.

They selected a variety of different toys including a Heroes helicopter, a dump truck, a bulldozer, an interactive dinosaur, an Ariel doll, a Frozen hideaway tent and two infant toys.

JD said he plans to continue doing this every year with the hopes of collecting more bottles so he can buy more presents for Island children.

"We are trying to get more money each year."

Through doing this, he hopes to inspire other kids to get involved and help make Christmas a little brighter for others.