INDEPENDENCE, Ohio — For over 40 years, Wild Republic has brought joy to countless children and their families with every toy.
The company is family-owned, Cleveland-based, and committed to their community.
"Everything we do, we always make sure we give back," says Wild Republic CEO Vishchan Dran.
The global toy company has moved its headquarters to Independence, consolidating its three facilities in Twinsburg into a 300,000 square foot warehouse in Independence.
On Tuesday, the company held its ribbon-cutting. Wild Republic marked its grand opening in Independence with the sentiment of "Giving Tuesday," donating more than $100,000 worth of plush toys to children in need. That equates to around 11,000 toys that will be donated to local agencies like Big Brothers Big Sisters, food banks, foster care programs, and local police departments.
"The fact that we can do this today and give these stuffed animals back to the children and be able to get them into education through recreation and have them learn while they're doing this, it's a great feeling." says Dran.
Each toy is made of 100% recyclable products, from packaging to the plush materials. They are a gift that keeps on giving. For example, Independence Police Chief Robert Butler says the toys help officers to connect with the community, especially with young children.
"Anyone that we can reach out to and find a new way to bridge the gap with them (children), this means the world," Butler says.
With a donation of nearly 750 new toys to the Independence Police Department this season, Butler believes officers will be able to do exactly that.
"This is a new way for us to communicate and reach out to them (children) and show them that we're their friends," he adds. "We're the good guys and we now have a tool to do that."
In addition to the 750 stuffed animals to the Independence Police Department, Wild Republic also donated 19,000 more to the Rotary Club of Cleveland.