Before the kids get too involved with their holiday wish lists, help them remember that this is the season of giving. Here are seven suggestions for ways to get involved, give back, and help make this holiday season a little brighter for others.


Toys for Tots

Each year, the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots program provides gifts to less fortunate children throughout our country. Families can participate by donating money and/or gifts (new, unwrapped toys). The website has information regarding communities being served and where you can find drop-off locations.

Operation Homefront Holiday Toy Drive

Operation Homefront strives to make the holidays more joyful for the children of our military families. Toys and gift cards will be distributed to junior enlisted military families. You can make a donation (monetary or gift) at your local Dollar Tree store. Also, check the website for more information if your business wishes to set up a collection bin.

It’s All About the Kids –  Toys from the Heart

It’s All About the Kids strives to make this holiday season a happy and educational one for children across southern California. Gifts they collect will be distributed to a variety of charities as well as to help families who have transitioned out of certain programs but who may still be struggling. They are looking for toys, books, and educational materials.


This organization works year-round to provide low-income children (infants to age 12) with basic items that all children should grow up having, and accepts donations year-round. Baby2Baby is always happy to receive wipes, diapers, clothes, toys, and books (both new and gently used). (Check their website to find a complete list of items they accept and locations where you can make a donation – including many Whole Foods Markets).

Holidays from the Heart – Children’s Hospital Los Angeles

The Holidays from the Heart program aims to make the holidays a little happier for chronically ill children and their families. There are a number of ways to help, including sponsoring a family, as well as providing bulk gift items (clothing, diapers), making a monetary donation, or serving as a volunteer (shopping for gifts, distributing gifts). Check the website for more details on how to help.

Babes in Toyland

The 10th Annual ‘Babes in Toyland – Charity Toy Drive’ will take place in the historic Avalon Theater in Hollywood on Wednesday December 6, 2017. Since 2008, the Babes in Toyland – Charity Toy Drive has been one of the hottest tickets in Hollywood during the Holiday season. Last year, Babes in Toyland donated over $60,000 in toys to the Midnight Mission.

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.

Did we miss any toy drives in your area? Please let us know in the comments. 



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  1. Jesse 16 November, 2015 at 19:01 Reply

    Thanks so much for reminding people the joy that comes from giving and making others smile. I’ve started my own charity bike drive in connection with the Dept. of Children and Family Services in L.A., where a donation of just $69 buys an often forgotten Tween/Teen age foster child a BRAND NEW Kent bike, plus a Razor helmet and a bike lock to make this a very special holiday for them. If this resonates with anyone, please spread the word. Much gratitude!

    • Yvonne Condes 16 December, 2016 at 11:17 Reply

      Hi, Rena. You can drop off toys at your local fire station. There’s one at 7643 California State Rte 2, West Hollywood, CA 90046 and one at 5821 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90036 in your area. Thank you!

  2. Jennifer 17 December, 2017 at 18:43 Reply

    My little sisters and brother unfortunately won’t be getting presents this year which wAs a hard y’all to have with them . Is there somewhere in particular that I can take them to get gifts and feel that even strangers care to make a smile on their faces;$

  3. Kim S. Bradshaw 18 December, 2017 at 08:53 Reply

    My family has resided in Los Angeles for 3 1/2 yrs. We were just told about this organization? I’d like to know can the people in the community receive toys and clothing for 2017 Christmas as well? What dates and times are the Christmas Giveaways?

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