The Kids at The Willie Mays Boys and Girls Club Receive Special Delivery

The holiday spirit came to life at the Willie Mays Boys and Girls Club in San Francisco Wednesday afternoon when Recology employee-owners dropped off more than 100 toys and games and three new bicycles.

The gifts were all donated by Recology employees who work in San Francisco. There were enough so all of the kids received at least two presents.

“The kids need it. They really do,” said Ayanna Banks, a sorter at Recycle Central who helps coordinate the donations.

Ayanna placed blue donation bins at the office and the dispatch center for Recology Sunset Scavenger and at offices for Recology Golden Gate, Recology San Francisco and Recology’s main office in the City.

Somehow the kids at the Boys and Girls Club knew Wednesday was the big day. A 9-year-old boy ran from the gym to the front desk several times and asked “Are they here yet?” At 2 p.m. Ayanna and Darryl Moses, general manager at Recycle Central, arrived with 10 large, heavy bags filled with games and toys. Then came the new bikes assembled by Recology mechanics.

Club staff, including Germaine Bonds, paired gifts to students so everyone got something that matched their interests.

Ayanna said she and several of her co-workers used to attend the Boys and Girls Club after school when they were young students. They received tutoring in several subjects and then got to play in the club gym. “It was a safe haven,” she said.

Last fall more than 200 Recology employee-owners participated in a community service day at the club. Among other projects, the volunteers sanded and painted the gym and repaired and reconditioned the club garden with compost. Workers also built a new green house for the club and removed several tons of yard trimmings including branches and piles of leaves.

Ayanna started at Recology Sunset Scavenger 17 years ago and has worked for the last nine years at Recycle Central on Pier 96. That’s where Ayanna and other Recology workers sort the recyclables San Franciscans place in their blue curbside recycling bins. For many years Ayanna has taken a leadership role in community service efforts. This is the fourth year in a row that she has helped coordinate the holiday gift donation project for the Boys and Girl’s club, which is located on a hill overlooking San Francisco Bay and Pier 96.

Several times a year Ayanna also joins other women who talk with girls at San Francisco Juvenal Hall.