Toy Drives and Donations

Teaching children to give is especially meaningful around the holidays, and participating in toy drives or making donations can be a wonderful way for children to spread goodwill to others. There are many organizations accepting new, unopened toys, as well as monetary donations, gift certificates and gently used toys to give to children and families in need.  At this time of year, many churches and schools have plans in place to connect families in need with those who would like to make donations. Contact your place of worship or school for wish lists and giving information or refer to one of the organizations listed below. Either way, celebrate the true meaning of the season and help those in need!

Two children in Santa hats stand in front of a toy drive collection sign

Toy Drives and Donations in Chicago’s West Suburbs

Where to Donate New Toys

Some organizations accept only new, unopened toys. Please refer to their websites for giving guidelines, especially when giving to organizations that help sick children.

Lurie Children’s Hospital

Lurie Children’s Hospital accepts new toy donations year-round. See the current wish list and giving tips here. Gift certificates are also greatly appreciated. E-mail [email protected] to arrange a donation drop-off or with any questions. If you would like to mail your gift, please address the package to:

Justyna A. Griffin
Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago
225 E. Chicago Avenue, Box 31
Chicago, IL 60611-2605

Marine Toys for Tots

There are hundreds of drop-off locations listed for DuPage County here and Cook County here.  Toys R Us and Babies R Us are national drop-off sites. With so many drop-off locations nearby, it’s very easy to donate to this charity. Toys for Tots collects new and unwrapped toys, as well as donations to purchase toys, that go directly to children in DuPage County.

Sharing Connections

5111 Chase Avenue
Downers Grove, IL
(630) 971-0565
Available for drop-offs weekdays from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm and Saturdays from 9 am – 12 pm

Sharing Connections accepts donations of all kinds in their Downers Grove location and provides assistance to over 1,000 local DuPage County children. They will begin distributing toys on December 11, 2017, so plan to donate ahead of time. No donation is too small – everything received will go directly to a family that needs help. New toys, clothing and gift certificates are also greatly appreciated. See the current wish list and information here.

People’s Resource Center

201 S. Naperville Road
Wheaton, IL 60187

104 Chestnut Avenue
Westmont, IL 60559

People’s Resource Center’s annual Share the Spirit program provides more than 800 DuPage families in financial stress with toys, books, hats and mittens. You can also donate online to help the center purchase gifts and gift cards for families. This year’s donation collections will take place 9:00 am – 4:00 pm on Friday, December 1, 2017 at PRC Southeast, 104 Chestnut, Vestment and 9 am – 3 pm on Sunday, December 3, 2017 at the DuPage County Fairgrounds, 2015 Manchester Road, Wheaton.

Ronald McDonald House

Donations to the Ronald McDonald House help them carry out their mission of caring for families of children with complex medical needs. The wishlist can be found here. There are five houses in the Chicagoland area, please contact for specific wish lists.

Ronald McDonald Near Advocate Children’s Hospital
4410 W. 93rd Street
Oak Lawn, IL 60453
(708) 423-5285

Ronald McDonald Near Lurie Children’s Hospital
211 E. Grand Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 888-2500

Ronald McDonald House Near Loyal Medical Center
Tripp Ave at Airmail Road
1 Airmail Rd on your GPS
(Hines VA complex)
Hines, IL 60141
(708) 327-2273

Ronald McDonald Near University of Chicago Comer Children’s Hospital
5444 S. Drexel Avenue
Chicago, IL 60615
(773) 324-5437

Four Corners Community Church Christmas Market

8251 Lemont Rd
Darien, IL 60561
(630) 481-6381

Four Corners Community Church in Darien is hosting a Christmas Market where local families can find brand-new toys and gifts at drastically reduced prices (usually $5 or less). It’s designed to help under-resourced families celebrate the holidays without added stress/debt. Your family can help by picking out a gift in the $20–$30 price range and dropping it off at one of their collection sites by December 2. See the website for details on how to donate, or register to volunteer your time here.

Where to Donate Gently Used Toys

The following agencies will distribute gently used toys to local families.

Toy Box Connection Children’s Charity
159th & LaGrange Road
Orland Park, IL
(708) 691-2715
This not-for-profit agency serves as connection between families and businesses who have new or used toys/books to donate and the children that need them most. They are in special need of many items this holiday season. Please see the wish list here.

Family Tree Resale
310 E. Geneva Rd.
Wheaton, IL
(630) 469-4576
Family Tree Resale runs a free voucher program for the local community, partnering with area schools and organizations. Local families in need utilize vouchers to shop for free in the store.

The Gingham Tree Resale Shop
On the campus of Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital
900 W. 39th St.
Downers Grove, IL 60515
Gently used clothing and toys among other items are accepted at this resale shop.

The Pink Elephant Resale Shop
121 W. First Street
Elmhurst, IL
All proceeds benefit the Edward-Elmhurst Memorial Healthcare.

For more holiday cheer, check out the Kidlist events calendar for fun, family-friendly events near you.

About the Author

Meghan Neill
Meghan and her husband live in Downers Grove with their two sons ages five and six and their two year old daughter. She is a transplant to the Chicago area and absolutely loves all that the western suburbs have to offer for her young family. One of their favorite places to visit year round is the Morton Arboretum. During the summer months, they love to garden, bike, swim, and play golf together. In the winter, Meghan and her children are happy to be home trying out new kid friendly recipes and being creative. As a former teacher, Meghan believes in a healthy balance of unstructured play and scheduled activities. She is excited to be part of the Kidlist team and wants to help families add fun and laughter to their days!

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