More like Robin Hood than Billy the kid

Gregory D. Cook

Members of the Outlawz Car Club pose with some of the toys they have received as part of their annual Christmas Toy Drive on Nov. 17

Cassandra McGowan, Reporter

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Outlawz Car Club of Bakersfield will hold its fifth annual toy drive Dec. 3 in the parking lot of La Cabana on White Lane from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Don’t let the name of this car club fool you because these people are actually very charitable and pay for all the costs of setting up the toy drive from their own pockets and all proceeds go to the cause.

The club itself was started about seven years ago and has since been taken over by the current members, 18 families to be exact.

When asked the main purpose of the club, Tim Lewis said, “Brotherhood and to have fun.”

Five years ago, the Outlawz saw a need within the community, the need to bring a smile to a hospitalized child’s face. They decided to start the toy drive and have had so much success with the help of the community that they are now able to supply: toys, various books, children’s DVDs, and crayons year round.

Jeff Hill works in Kern Medical Center’s Neonatal intensive care unit and gets to see the need for smiles first-hand.

“I’ve been at KMC for 24 plus years [and] in the pediatric unit for over 10 years.  I had to move up there because I hurt my back, and now I love it,” said Hill.

Everything they collect is for KMC, including any cash donations or money made from the raffles. It goes right to things needed for the pediatrics unit to make the children happy.

“Everything is for the hospital,” said Bill Araujo

The Outlawz take nothing, only give.

“We collect enough toys in December to sustain for all year,” said Will Sheppard.

The toy drive isn’t the only charitable thing the Outlawz participate in. They also help with two of the canned food drives KGET hosts, a fan drive and they also participated in Stuff the Bus.

“We just do something for a cause,” said Bill Araujo.

Various club members agreed that they like to help the community, they don’t want to line their own pockets, and they want to help the less fortunate.

“[The toy drive] started off really casual and has developed,” said Jeff Hill.

Elizabeth Araujo said, “We didn’t expect it to do so well.”

The Outlawz were all in agreement that the look in the children’s eyes once receiving the gifts is priceless, and it’s all they can do to keep the tears from flowing.

“To see these big guys with tears in their eyes, it’s something else,” said Elizabeth Araujo.

To make a donation, visit one of the various locations that the Outlawz have placed donation boxes or contact Bill Araujo at 661-912-4037 or Jeff Hill at 661-477-2055.

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