The organizer of an annual Christmas toy drive got a surprise head start on his collection efforts this year.

Troy Austin, who works security for the Downtown Burlington High School, was given piles of toys to donate to kids and families for this year’s Troy’s Toy Drive.

High school staff and students surprised Austin by presenting him with the toys while singing him Christmas carols. This is Austin’s 8th year running the toy drive, which he started when he was in high school. Once his collection efforts are over, he’ll bring the toys down to the Salvation Army.

Austin says this is a great start to his toy drive, and he enjoys bringing the community together to help out some families.

“I thought something was going on today that they were not telling me about, but when I came in here I was truly surprised and it’s amazing how much support I have for this toy drive,” Austin said.

He added, “it’s amazing to help out families in the community and know that there’s kids that will have a toy to play with.”