Updated for 2023
Before the kids get too involved with their holiday wish lists, help them remember that this is the season of giving and that there are children in Los Angeles who may not receive many gifts without our donations. In fact, the Holiday Toy Drive was invented here in Los Angeles in 1947 by Toys for Tots.
Here are suggestions for ways to help make this holiday season a little brighter for children in LA. A new toy is a simple thing to donate and can bring so much joy to a child on Christmas morning. Consider these Holiday Toy Drives in Los Angeles.
Holiday Toy Drives in SoCal
The Walt Disney Company has launched the 2023 Disney Ultimate Toy Drive in support of the Marine Toys for Tots Program, continuing a 75-year tradition of helping the foundation deliver toys, hope, and joy to children in need during the holiday season.
Fans and families can join the Disney Ultimate Toy Drive by purchasing a toy to donate online at shopDisney.com now through December 24, 2023. Or you can donate a new, unwrapped toy in person at a Disney store or Disney Store outlet location, the Downtown Disney District at Disneyland Resort, or Disney Springs at Walt Disney World Resort, now through December 15, 2023.
Each year since 1947, the “Marine Toys for Tots Program has been delivering a message of hope to less fortunate youngsters.” This special program provides holiday gifts to less fortunate children throughout our country. Families can participate by donating money and/or gifts of new, unwrapped toys. The website has information regarding communities being served and where you can find drop-off locations.
Every year, Southern California firefighters and ABC7 TV join forces to make the holiday season a happier one for less fortunate children in our communities. “Over the years, the Spark of Love Toy Drive has successfully collected and distributed nearly 11 million toys!”
Donations will begin being accepted around November 1st. Families can participate by donating funds, donating a toy through the Spark of Love gift registry available online, or through one of the other ways mentioned on their website.
This is Spark of Love’s 31st year, and they are holding a Stuff-A-Bus Event in several locations in the LA area. You can find out more information online.
The Ventura County Fire Department is also joining ABC7 TV to gather donations and toys for children and teens to provide happiness and hope during this holiday season. In addition to toys, they are also seeking donations of non-perishable food at certain locations. See the website for additional information.
Friends of the Children — Los Angeles (Friends LA)
672 S. Lafayette Park Pl., Ste. 33, Los Angeles, CA 90057
539 W. Lancaster Blvd., Lancaster, CA 93534
Friends of the Children-Los Angeles (Friends LA) disrupts generational trauma and poverty through the power of relationships with long-term, salaried, professional mentors. They pair children ages 4-6 who have been affected by the foster care and/or child welfare systems to professional mentors — who they call “Friends” — from kindergarten through high school graduation. They commit to their children and their caregivers for 12+ years, no matter what.
Here are a few of the ways you can help Friends LA this holiday season :
- Host a toy drive (see the website for details)
- Donate new, unwrapped toys and/or clothing for children ages 6 months – 18 years old
- Donate grocery or gas cards
- Donate activity kits for children ages 4–12 years old
- Join the Forever Friend program and become a monthly donor
- Volunteer to help with their worthwhile events and workshops
Donations can be made to either location from November 1st through December 11th.
Citadel Outlets’ Toy Drive
100 Citadel Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90040
November 25-December 17, Fridays through Sundays – CHiPs for Kids Annual Holiday Toy Drive – The CHiPs for Kids Annual Holiday Toy Drive is returning to Citadel Outlets, running from November 25 through December 17, Fridays through Sundays. Shoppers are encouraged to drop off a new, unwrapped toy in the bin located at Customer Service to share the holiday magic with a child or teen in need.
5830 W. Jefferson Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90016
This organization works year-round to provide low-income children (infants to age 12) with basic items that all children should have while growing up and generally accepts donations year-round. Because of COVID-19, Baby2Baby is unable to accept gently used donations. However, families can still help by donating funds as well as donating less-fun, but still essential, items like diapers, wipes, and hygiene items such as soap and shampoo. Check the website for details.
CHLA Holiday Block Party & Toy Drive
The Point, 850 S. Pacific Coast Hwy., El Segundo, CA 90245
Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles is holding a holiday block party and toy drive this year at The Point. The event takes place on December 16th from 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. and benefits chronically ill children and their families. You can attend, donate a new toy or household item, and in return receive a shopping and dining passport that unlocks special holiday incentives at shops at The Point. You’ll also get a chance to enter and win other prizes, get free treats, and more. There will also be live performances including a short performance of The Nutcracker. Check the website for more details.
Holiday Giving Drive
Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office
“Each holiday season, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office provides much-needed cheer to hundreds of crime victims and their families through the Holiday Giving Drive.” The Holiday Giving Drive provides holiday meals and gifts. Families can help by making a tax-deductible donation to this program. Details are available online.
YWCA Glendale & Pasadena
735 E. Lexington Dr., Glendale, CA 91206
“Each year donors at YWCA Glendale make holiday wishes come true for families affected by domestic violence.” You can help by adopting a family in need. Families provide a list of their most needed items, and donors are matched with family profiles and their wish lists. Check the website for details on how your family can get involved.
Aviva’s Annual Holiday Drive
Aviva Family and Children’s Services
7120 Franklin Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90046
Aviva’s Sponsor-A-Family and Sponsor-A-Child Holiday Programs are designed to assist vulnerable children and their families who do not have resources to celebrate the holidays.” Sponsor families have the opportunity to provide families in need with food and clothing as well as gifts during the holiday season. Families may choose to adopt a child or a family, and they will then receive a personalized wish list. Other ways to help include sorting/organizing gifts, hosting a toy drive, and making a financial donation. Details are available online.
Your child’s school and/or class
Bring home the idea and the spirit of giving, by helping to arrange a toy drive at your child’s school. (If you’d prefer to start smaller, organize one for your child’s classroom). Work out the details with your child’s teacher (monetary limit for donations, when donations need to be brought in, perhaps a class incentive for 100% participation), and then donate those toys to an organization of your choice. While this year it may be a bit more difficult to coordinate collecting gifts since everyone is learning from home, don’t hesitate to reach out to your child’s teacher. He/she may have a direct connection with an organization needing donated toys and funds.
Did we miss any toy drives in your area? Please let us know in the comments.
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