Each December, over 15,000 attend our events. That’s a lot of toys, so understandably toy collection is a major year-round effort. There are several opportunities to get involved and help us bring the magic of Christmas to these children.
1. Buy toys
About a third of the toys we distribute each year come from individuals who personally shop for them. Either by actually visiting stores, checking toy catalogs, or going online, they review all of the toys that are available and select the items they would like to give. This is our favorite method and we encourage it for several reasons. Besides providing an incredible variety of toys and enhancing the donor’s connection with the children, it is most of all more fun.
2. Organize a Toy Drive with your Family & Friends
Some of our most effective toy drives have been organized by individuals who involve their family and friends. It’s really simple to do. Each participant agrees to go out and buy a certain number of toys and to find one additional person who can also participate.
3. Organize a Toy Drive at your Work
Toy drives can be amazing team builders. Quite often different departments will challenge each other to see who can collect the most toys. It’s a lot of fun, brings people closer together behind a common goal, and the children get a great selection of toys. Win, win!
4. Organize a Toy Drive at your Church
Congregations in houses of worship will usually understand the plight of the children we serve and have the compassion to want to help us address these issues. They also have the numbers of members necessary to easily do an impressive toy drive.
5. Organize a Neighborhood Toy Drive
I made a flyer and distributed it to thirty homes on my block. This resulted in 127 toys being dropped off in the collection box I placed by my front door. Another effective way to conduct a neighborhood toy drive is to use the internet. Most communities are connected by a bulletin board type web page, like “Next Door.” You can post about your project and people will respond. I am amazed at how giving my neighbors are.
6. Organize a Toy Drive at a service organization or club
Many of us belong to a service organization or social club. Lions, Rotary, Kiwanis, Elks, and many others like to support community service. If you belong to one of these, ask them to help. If you don’t belong, present them with a proposal. These groups are amazing.
7. Purchase toys on Amazon
This Fall, we will have an Amazon link to a page of suggested toys. You will be able to select what you want to give and have it shipped directly to us. Easy!
8. Donate and we will buy toys for you
If time is a consideration and you schedule is too full to go out shopping for toys, simply make a donation and earmark it for toy purchases. We will go out and do the shopping for you. PNA is a 501(c)(3) IRS approved nonprofit charity, #86-0700750, so your purchase of toys may be eligible for deduction from your income tax.