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Southern Utah Community Gathering Gifts For Annual Shivwits Toy Drive

People standing outside of a jewelry store in southern Utah.
Jim Sevy

Growing up on the Piute Reservation near Santa Clara, Utah, Glenn Rogers said his family was so poor that there often weren’t any gifts at Christmas time. 

According to Rogers, a member of the Shivwits Band of the Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah, this experience was common for many other families in his community. Around 20 years ago, when Rogers was chair of the Shivwits band, he wanted to help ensure all of the children in the band would receive a gift at the holiday party. 

“I just thought that those kids need more than what I got when I was a kid,” Rogers said.

Rogers reached out to his employer, Jim Sevy, and asked if members of a local congregation would be willing to make donations for a toy drive. They were. 

In the years since the giving has continued and more people have become involved. Donations have increased so much that Rogers said they are able to provide food and toys to people outside the Shivwits Band as well.

“They're giving with their hearts,” Rogers said. That's what's leading some of them to give. So when they get like that I feel really happy for them, for the people that are giving and I also feel happy for the children.”

Rogers and Sevy said while there is still bigotry and animosity that exists towards the Native communities in and around Santa Clara, the drive has played a part in helping people connect with each other as human beings. 

For information on how to donate to the drive, call M&S Turquoise at 435-628-0393 and ask for Sevy.