Where to Donate Gently Used Toys on Long Island
Every year at this time, I have a little tradition: I bring Holiday gifts into the house only to realize we have plenty of great toys already. So I ponder, briefly, the two options in front of me: Take all the new stuff right back to the toy store and re-wrap all the toys we already have to make them "new again!" OR save myself a trip back to the toy store for a return, and, even better-clean out our barely used toys and share them with kids who really need them. The latter option always wins out and that's when I call my kids down to their playroom and tell them it's time to pick out some toys to share with the kids who REALLY need them. They may not fully understand the meaning of their actions, but knowing they just "don't have any room for new toys if the current inventory still exists" gets them every year.
The trouble is-fewer and fewer places are accepting gently used toys, with all the lead and other hazardous chemicals being found in them. Even the Goodwill sent me packing last week when I showed up with a used wooden kitchen and a tool set. Really? I said, with my two healthy kids in the car, can't you tell there is no lead poisoning on these? So, off I went, on a journey to find some local charities who would be accepting gently used toys this time of year--and it turns out, there are plenty of them right here on Long Island. If you have toys to share, please take a look, and do so soon, so these fine charities have a chance of getting the items in the hands of the children during this Holiday Season. Please note: Contact these charities for drop location or additional information.
2450 North Wading River Road, Wading River
Harbor Child Day Care
700 Glen Cove Avenue, Glen Head
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Long Island
145 Sycamore Lane, Islandia (631) 273-1469
70 Acorn Lane, Levittown (516) 731-7880
Pick up scheduling available
211 Fulton Avenue, Hempstead
2255 Centre Avenue, Bellmore
(800) 850-9000 - Pick-up scheduling available
2 Wilson Boulevard, Central Islip
(631) 582-0242 - Pick-Up scheduling available
One other tip: Ask your preschool child's school director, local library or church. Often, they are willing to accept used toys and books from someone they know and trust.
Originally posted on December 16, 2012.