DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – COVID-19 can’t stop a North Texas teen from giving back to the hospital where he was once a patient.

Micah Pinson, 16, has found a way to still bring joy to families this holiday season at the Scottish Rite Hospital for Children in Dallas – even though he had to cancel his annual toy drive.

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Micah Pinson (CBS 11)

“They did surgeries on my hand when I was about two,” said Pinson.

He doesn’t remember much about his time as a patient there, but it left a big impression on his family.

“Hearing back from my parents’ stories is what really gets me,” he said. “I came to them when I was about six, and said ‘Hey, what can we do for the hospital that’s helped me so much?’”

So they started collecting toys to donate during the holiday season.

Micah Pinson (credit: Scottish Rite Hospital for Children in Dallas)

“The first year, we collected about 2,000 toys,” Pinson said. “And for the past two years, we’ve collected over 20,000, so it’s grown ever since then, which is incredible.”

Pinson’s annual toy drive has made an impact on countless families for the past nine years.

“With that outpouring of love for our kids, we typically will kind of fill our closet, and that’s what gets us through the year,” said Stephanie Brigger, Vice President of Development at Scottish Rite.

Micah Pinson (credit: Scottish Rite Hospital for Children in Dallas)

Because of COVID-19 concerns, the hospital isn’t accepting any in-person toy donations this year.

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Still, Micah was determined to find a way to help. Instead of toys, he’s been collecting gift cards for his tenth annual holiday drive.

So far, people have donated more than a thousand of them.

His school, Corinth Classical Academy, has been particularly supportive of his cause.

“It’s really something heartwarming, especially in such a time of uncertainty,” he said.

Pinson may not feel as much like Santa this year without a truck full of toys to deliver, but he’s grateful to still do some good.

“We wanted the tenth year to be special, and it definitely has been,” Pinson said. “We are so grateful that we can continue to do this toy drive and hope it can continue for much longer.”

Pinson plans to deliver the gift cards to the hospital on Christmas Eve.

You can donate to the hospital here through Dec. 31.

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Caroline Vandergriff