By Danielle Miller
Joshua Scarver’s brand #DWYD (Do What You Desire) is rounding on its seventh year working to collect toys for local children who have been impacted by abuse. DWYD holds a yearly walk-in donation Toy and Book Drive at local companies around Milwaukee.
“I’ve had family members who were victims [of abuse],” Scarver said, and “I didn’t know how to help like that, but if I can inspire people to give, even with just the small things, a toy or a book. It will be helping them in the healing process.”
Scarver and the #DWYD brand work with the Child Advocacy Center to help reach children who Scarver said aren’t in the forefront of community attention due to many of the privacy barriers that keep donors from seeing who they are helping.
The Toy and Book drive started with a personal tie and a pajama party at a local restaurant on Brady Street, in which Scarver told those who were planning to come to bring a toy or a book. In 2017, the Toy and Book Drive had more than doubled in size and companies of who participated.
In past years, Scarver worked with Harley Davidson, Fashion Angels, that donated children’s make-up kits, Half Priced Books, that donated a thousand books, the Milwaukee Bucks, that donated bobble heads and other companies around Milwaukee who helped collect toys.
“It’s about raising awareness,” Scarver said, “and helping to get companies into the community.”
Scarver and the Child Advocacy Center are working to get sports toys, such as footballs and soccer balls for the boys around the ages of 9 to 17 years old who aren’t typically pictured as children who need assistance.
The Child Advocacy Center is one of the largest networks overseen by the Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, and is centered around bringing adolescents of abuse to a safe place while investigating cases to help victims and their families.
Scarver and his team worked throughout the year planning donation sites and events such as gift wrapping toys and books at Barnes and Nobel. Scarver said the donations they received helped keep the shelves at the Children’s Advocacy Center stocked.
“It took on a life of its own,” Scarver said about the project.
Scarver and his Fiancé were the driving force behind starting this project
“There is no corporate person behind this, it’s just us,” he said.
The brand #DWYD was started from a music career by Scarver and his group, with his fiancé assisting on branding and design. #DWYD played at Summerfest as well as cities such as New Orleans, Chicago and Detroit.
Scarver said they are working to get essentials, such as socks and personals for children who don’t have easy access to new clothes.
To find out how to help email Scarver at firstname.lastname@example.org.