United States Sports Academy President, founder and CEO Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich poses with members of the U.S. Marines Corps Reserves during a past Toys for Tots event.

The United States Sports Academy and the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Foundation are teaming up for the 15th year to help underprivileged children enjoy a memorable Christmas.

Long considered the region’s largest collection center for the Toys for Tots program, local residents may bring donations to the Academy each Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Toys should be delivered to the Christmas tree in the main lobby of the Academy at One Academy Drive in Daphne.

The Toys for Tots program was founded in 1947 by Marine Corps Maj. William L. Hendricks, when Hendricks and a group of Marine Reservists in Los Angeles first collected and distributed 5,000 toys to needy children.

The Academy encourages schools, clubs, associations and businesses in the area to drop off their new, unwrapped toys and help assist those who need it most this time of year. All toys that are dropped off at the Academy will be distributed to children in Baldwin County.

“The most wonderful thing to see are schoolchildren coming by bus to give gifts to other children,” said Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich, the president, founder and CEO of the Academy, and a former U.S. Marine.

More than 400 million toys have been distributed to 188 million needy children since the inception of the Toys for Tots.