WINNIPEG -- A new initiative is aimed at making sure children in Northern Manitoba communities get Christmas gifts this year.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, several First Nations communities are in lockdown right now, which means that 4,000 kids may not get gifts this year.

Now, Indigenous Canadian Medical Dispensaries has teamed up with Indigenous leaders and military members deployed in northern communities to create the ‘Let’s Save Christmas Toy Drive.’

Donations to the toy drive will be used to buy toys for kids in remote Manitoba communities, such as Red Sucker Lake and Shamattawa, who wouldn’t otherwise be able to get them.

The goal of the fundraiser, which began on Friday, is $50,000, with organizers saying donations of all sizes have already been coming in.

“Overnight we quickly got $400 to $500 in donations in 10s and 20s and hundreds,” said Christopher Henry with Indigenous Canadian Medical Dispensaries.

“Quite honestly it’s the $10 ones that really warm my heart the most, because if they’re giving us $10, that means something to them. Ten dollars is a lot of money and I think it’s amazing that they can spare something that matters to them so much so that they can out a smile on someone’s face far away.”

Anyone who wants to donate can do so by going to the toy drive page on the Indigenous Canadian Medical Dispensaries website or through GoFundMe.