The holidays may bring out the joy, but they can also bring out the worst in people. Someone stole 300 toys meant for children and families in need.

It's the true story of the grinch who stole Christmas.

A brightly lit symbol of Christmas at the East Cherry branch of the YWCA is now a symbol of something else. Despite all the decorations on it, it's what's missing under the Christmas tree that brings Community Resource coordinator Nichelle Hilton to tears.

Who would do that? Who would steal Christmas presents from homeless children? asked Hilton.

And not just presents to go under one tree, but hundreds of trees for families in need. Sometime over the weekend, someone stole all $6,000 worth of toys the Y had from this vacant unit at the shelter across the street.

Now it negatively is going to affect every child whose present was in this box, and that box, and the 50 other boxes that aren't here, said Hilton.

Holiday hearts once full are running on empty for Hilton and for YWCA resident Jessica Giles.

There's nothing in the budget to buy anything for Christmas so it's coming from stuff like this, said Giles. So I hope that doesn't mean there will be nothing for Christmas.

Santa's list is all they have to show for the 200 toys just bought but now, not delivered.

Just the idea they can't comprehend and they just think Santa didn't find them, that just kills me, said Hilton.

Jessica Giles is disappointed too, but is counting on the true meaning of Christmas-- love and family.

It's definitely humbling and heartbreaking. But I have great kids and they'd understand.

The E. Cherry YWCA has one week to try to recover all that was stolen and they need your help. They don't have time to do the shopping all over again. So if you'd like to drop of a toy or two, or several, families and volunteers will be forever grateful.

The East Cherry YWCA is located at 2820 E. Cherry St. You can also contact Nichelle Hilton directly at (206) 412-1605.

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