July 13th, 2016
The toys were starting to take over. We have a closet in our basement that was bursting at the seams. It was filled with trucks, cars, trains and every imaginable game from the time my three boys were toddlers.
All three of my kids are at sleepaway camp for a few weeks. I’m missing them like crazy, but I know they’re having a fantastic time. The time for sorting and cleaning out that overflowing closet was here.
Over multiple days I pulled everything out and started sorting them into piles. Most were in decent shape so I really wanted to find a good home for them.
Many of the charities out there such as Goodwill and The Salvation Army take donations and resell them in their retail shops. The proceeds from any sale are then placed back into programs they support. As much as I love seeing the toys used for something good, they’re not directly donated to those in need. While this is an OK option, I knew that I wanted to pass along the toys directly to a family who would use them.
Here are 5 ways to donate used toys directly to a child in need
I started with Freecycle, which is an amazing nonprofit movement of people who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns. It’s all about reusing and keeping good stuff out of landfills. There is a Freecycle group in the town next to mine. I posted all the cars, trucks and trains on the site. A sweet woman was at my house within an hour. She takes care of her great-nephew so the toys were perfect. There’s no tax deduction if you use Freecycle.
ROOM TO GROW, Boston and New York
Room to Grow helps babies born into poverty throughout their first three years of life. The organization provides families with developmental information, customized support, and all of the needed baby items. If you live in Boston or New York this organization is a great option. They are looking for donations that are new or nearly new, clean and in truly excellent condition.
SECOND CHANCE TOYS
If there isn’t a collection in your area Second Chance Toys could be the answer. If you can gather 50+ gently used plastic toys from your community, Second Chance Toys will arrange for a drop-off at a local organization. Just go to collect toys to register. They’ll give you access to flyers, merchandise and other promotional items to promote your collection.
Check HERE to see if there’s a local homeless shelter in your area. Please call them to see if there’s a need before dropping off a donation. Local homeless shelters may want small toys to give to children they are housing.
STUFFED ANIMALS FOR EMERGENCIES (SAFE)
If you have stuffed animals to donate try Stuffed Animals for Emergencies. The organization was founded to help ease anxiety and fear when children are in a crisis situation. SAFE chapter members collect new and gently used stuffed animals, toys, books and blankets to be redistributed to emergency organizations, children’s services, hospitals, homeless shelters and many other places that help children during times of crisis.
Do you have any other donation suggestions to add to the list?
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December 14th, 2012
If you have a child or two who loves to build and create masterpieces then these cork building blocks will rock your world. My kids have been using wooden building blocks for years so building blocks in general aren’t a new concept. We’ve created roads, garages, houses, jumps and towers.
What makes these cork building blocks rock (has a ring to it, doesn’t it?) is that they are soft and lightweight. They also don’t have any toxic paint or finish on them. No worries if they end up in a little one’s mouth. My guys have also been known to chuck a wooden building block at someone’s head. These don’t hurt as much.
My kids are 12, 10 and 9. I was amazed to see their excitement when the box of cork building blocks arrived. When given the OK they ripped the box open and spent a good hour creating and recreating.
We started off with this.
The castle quickly turned into this.
EcoBayHome.com offers a range of products for the home all made from environmentally friendly materials. The set of cork building blocks comes with 20 pieces includes a handy storage bag to take the cork blocks on any outing. The building blocks are made from 100% natural, 100% renewable cork which is sustainably harvested from the Cork Oak Tree. The blocks in the set come in a variety of shapes and sizes which encourages children to use their creativity in numerous ways. The cork building blocks are recommended for children 3 years old and up while slightly older children (just like mine) enjoy playing with these cork blocks just as much.
EcoBayHome.com has graciously offered to give one Groovy Green Livin reader a set of cork building blocks (value $49.95). By entering your name and other information you acknowledge that you have read and are agreeing to our Official Rules.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Disclosure: I was sent a set of cork building blocks for review from EcoBayHome.com. The opinions expressed in this review are my very own.
November 15th, 2012
Toys finally made their way into our home after 5 long years of trying to have a child. Creating our family didn’t come easily for us. We were forced, as many are, to place a tremendous amount of thought into whether or not we wanted to bring children into this world. Infertility will do that to you.
So the day that toys finally made their way into our home was a happy day. A day that I’ll never take for granted. Now there’s hardly a space that isn’t cluttered with toys. We trip on them, we fight over them and we break them.
When my oldest son was born a slew of toys and other baby gifts showed up, each one special and thoughtful in its own right. Twelve years and two brothers later many if not most of those toys have since broken and landed in a landfill in a far off place.
There’s one toy that has proven over and over its ability to withstand the test of time-a wooden truck hand crafted by my uncle. This toy has been through a lot. It’s made its way down several flights of stairs (multiple times), it’s gone off high jumps and it’s been the victim of a shoot out with several NERF guns at close range. The truck has proven that it’s top notch (it actually dumps things) and I know that it was made with a whole lotta love and it’s received a whole truckload of love in return.
In general I’m not a saver. When we’re done with a toy or clothing it’s on to the next family. However, there are a few toys that I can’t bear to part with and this truck is one of them. Most of us with children in our lives know that quality toys are hard to come by.
I have no doubt that this toy truck will be passed on to future generations who will hopefully enjoy it as much as my kids have.
If you’re looking for timeless gifts that can be passed on from generation to generation head on over to Abe’s Market and check out their newest products.
Does your family have a quality toy that will be around forever?
Abe’s Market will give Groovy Green Livin readers a 20% discount through midnight November 20, 2012. Use code GROOVYGREEN20 at checkout.
Disclosure: This post was written as part of a holiday partnership with Abe’s Market. Head on over to Abe’s Market to see which products I love. I did receive compensation for my participation. The opinions expressed in this post are my own.