5 Unique ways to donate this year

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I am trying to get into the holiday season this year by teaching my kids (especially my five year old) a little more about giving rather than getting. While that happens to be an extraordinarily difficult concept for my preschooler to grasp, together we came up with 5 unique ways to donate this year and we are both pretty excited about it! I wanted to do something a little different than just dragging bags of clothes to goodwill and this is what we came up with.

1. Candy

I’m going to start off talking about candy since we all just got done hauling home bags of candy on Halloween! If you’re anything like me, you want those sweets out of your house ASAP. I swear, we have been eating candy for breakfast, lunch and dinner and not only is my scale mad at me but my kiddos are running around with constant sugar highs. Well, guess what?! DONATE IT. You can search for organizations near you that will mail to soldiers overseas or donate to local men’s shelters!


2. Used Toys

Since we are about to deal with a gazillion new toys and finding new places for them, it is the perfect time to purge those toys that haven’t been played with in a while. I personally like explaining to my kids that since they will be getting new toys (whether they come from Santa or not if that isn’t your thing) that it is time to part with other toys to go to other kids who will love them. We decided to donate to our local Children’s hospital. Since my one year old daughter has had quite a few appointment’s with ours and even a hospital stay once when a baby I can personally say how much donated toys can really help families. I have never had an issue with an appointment as my kids have always been adequately distracted the entire wait, even the time that we had to spend over an hour in the waiting room. Additionally, they help out super sick kiddos who need a pick me up at the hospital. Just make sure that you don’t donate stuffed animals due to allergies and such. Doctor kits seem to be an extra loved item if you happen to have them. Ours has play kitchens at outpatient offices and more!


3. Samples and Toiletries

Since I am expecting a little one of course I have gotten a million samples from registry bags to formula coming in the mail. Heck, I still have all of the samples I got from when my one year old was born! Not to mention make up samples, lotions, creams, etc that I have never used and likely never will. These items may not be something you need or will likely use but they can be insanely helpful to those who are at a women’s shelter. Whatever reason they are there whether homeless or running away from abuse, these women need diaper rash creams, lotions, soaps, etc. and so do their kiddos that they have with them. We searched our bathroom cabinet and grabbed out everything we could find that we weren’t going to use. Heck, even a small box of tampons.


4. Stuffed animals and Blankets

When you have kids, you probably have like 500 stuffed animals and a ton of baby blankets that will never be used again. DON’T throw them out. While you could pass them on to kids, we are donating ours to animal shelters. That’s right. With the holidays coming up that also means colder weather and those kitties and doggies that wont have homes need a warm, cuddly place to sleep. Not to mention, the dogs would LOVE the stuffed animals as new toys!


5. New Toys

So. I have a problem. It’s called Target. I bet you do too! Specifically, Target clearance is my downfall. I just can’t pass up a good deal. Well. My kids do NOT need a ton more toys, but there are some kids who might not get everything they wished for this year. At the beginning of this year we had a conversation with my son about it and started stocking up. It actually became quite fun. Each Target trip we would look for the best toys we could find in the clearance section. Some only cost us $1, and others were $40+ toys we got for $10. We decided to take those toys to our local township who allows families who were not picked on a giving tree to come and pick out something for their kiddos. They always need more toys, and are super grateful for what is donated. Last year my son even got a thank you note from them for the toys we donated!


 I’m sure you can find a ton of other cool ways to get your family into donating. Do what works for you, with what you have. You certainly don’t need to spend a fortune and you can even just donate what you have in your home that is not getting used. When it comes down to it, we just wanted to instill a little bit of gratitude and love for others in our kiddos. I am so glad we came up with a few ideas this year. Leave a comment with ways you can think to donate too!


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