Making a Difference: Where to Donate Used Toys – 16 Charities & Places to Consider


If you’re looking to declutter your home from an overflow of toys or simply want to make a positive impact, donating gently used toys can be a rewarding experience. In this guide, we explore 16 charitable organizations and places where you can contribute to various causes while giving a new life to your kids’ toys.

  1. Goodwill:

Goodwill is an excellent option for donating toys.

The organization sells donated items to fund employment training and job placement programs.

  1. The Salvation Army:

Similar to Goodwill, the Salvation Army resells donated toys to support programs like adult rehabilitation centers.

Schedule a pickup for your donations or drop them off at a local center.

  1. Stuffed Animals for Emergencies (SAFE):

SAFE specializes in collecting new and gently used stuffed animals for children in traumatic situations.

Donations can be sent to active SAFE chapters or urgent need areas.

  1. The Arc:

The Arc focuses on advocating for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Local chapters accept toy donations, reselling them to fund programs and provide work experience.

  1. ClothingDonations.org:

Operated by the Vietnam Veterans of America, this organization accepts toy donations to support veterans’ programs.

Schedule a free pickup by entering your postal code on their website.

  1. Donation Town:

An online platform connecting you with local charities offering free pickup services.

Schedule pickups for toys and other household items conveniently.

  1. Local Thrift Stores:

Support locally owned thrift stores to give your toys a second life.

Note that some for-profit thrift stores may not qualify for charitable tax deductions.

  1. Foster Care Programs:

Connect with your local social services department to help foster kids or those in group homes.

Foster care programs are ideal for donating larger items like bicycles.

  1. Daycare Centers:

Daycare centers and preschools are in constant need of new toys for children’s play and learning.

Inquire with your child’s center or consider programs like Head Start.

  1. After-School Programs:

Used toys, especially sporting equipment and games, benefit after-school programs.

Contact your child’s school or nearby communities with potential needs.

  1. Doctor’s Offices:

Waiting rooms at pediatricians, dentists, and specialist offices often have toys for kids.

Check with local offices to see if they accept gently used toy donations.

  1. Children’s Hospitals:

Children’s hospitals use toys to keep kids entertained during appointments or hospital stays.

Check hospital websites for toy wish lists and donation guidelines.

  1. Women’s and Homeless Shelters:

Shelters, particularly women’s and homeless shelters, gratefully accept toy donations.

Check the Homeless Shelters Directory to find local shelters and their specific needs.

  1. Children’s Museums:

Children’s museums often welcome toy donations to enhance exhibits.

Contact your local museum to inquire about their donation guidelines.

  1. Animal Shelters:

Animal rescues and shelters accept toys for animals, especially those that are safe for chewing.

Ensure toys don’t have small parts or stuffing that could be harmful.

  1. Police and Fire Departments:

Local police and fire departments may accept stuffed animals for comforting children during traumatic events.

Inquire about donation opportunities, especially during holiday drives.


By donating your gently used toys to these diverse organizations and places, you not only declutter your home but also contribute to meaningful causes, making a positive impact on the lives of others. Get your kids involved, and turn the process of giving into a valuable lesson about compassion and generosity.

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