Have you got an over abundance of toys that you don’t need any more clogging up your apartment or house? Fear not. Do some good with your surplus Lego, pre loved dolls or teddy bears. There are a whole host of charities that need your toys, helping to make a big difference to children this Christmas.
Toys of Hope, located in Huntington, New York, was established in 1994. Founder Melissa Doktosky, saw too many children growing up under difficult circumstances. Her vision was to get a new toy for each child in need, something that would give them enjoyment, help them through their difficult times and show them that there is a community out there that actually cares.
Toys of Hope, has no paid employees. It does not maintain or pay for an office and the storage space used to keep the toys in is donated by a local building management company.
Second Chance Toys is a nonprofit corporation founded in 2006 to rescue and recycle plastic toys for children in need by donating them to community organizations.
The non biodegradable plastic is kept out of landfills so there’s a boost for the environment too. Plastic toys are chosen as they are hard wearing and show little sign of wear. They frequently look good as new.
Second Chance have collected 217,293 toys to date. They collect toys twice yearly, once during Earth Week and again in November and December for the holidays. For a list of their drop off locations in New York click here.
Room to Grow was founded in New York in 1998. Its mission is to ensure that babies born into poverty are supported and nourished through the first three critical years of their development. Room to Grow accepts baby gear, clothing, toys and other essentials for kids up to that age. Donations can be dropped off at their Chelsea location.
Baby buggy is open for drop offs Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Baby buggy has distributed more than 16 million items to families in need across America.
You can even donate to veterans. The Vietnam Veterans of America offer free collection. All you have to do is schedule a pick up day online, leave the labelled bags or boxes outside and they pick it up.
Housing Works have 12 thrift shops located around the city. It is a phenomenal community of people who work to help the lives of people living with and that are affected by HIV/AIDS.
Every program or charity that accepts donated toys has their own guidelines as to what types of toys they accept. Most require the toy to be in good condition and in proper working order. This is simply because they don’t have the resources to fix the toys themselves and no child wants a toy they cannot use. If you’re still unsure check their website.
Donating toys is a lovely way to usher in the spirit of Christmas for children that are not so fortunate in life. Winston Churchill famously said, “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”