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!
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 accepts new toy donations year-round. See the current wish list and giving tips here. Gift certificates are also greatly appreciated. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org 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
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.
5111 Chase Avenue
Downers Grove, IL
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.
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.
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
Ronald McDonald Near Lurie Children’s Hospital
211 E. Grand Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611
Ronald McDonald House Near Loyal Medical Center
Tripp Ave at Airmail Road
1 Airmail Rd on your GPS
(Hines VA complex)
Hines, IL 60141
Ronald McDonald Near University of Chicago Comer Children’s Hospital
5444 S. Drexel Avenue
Chicago, IL 60615
8251 Lemont Rd
Darien, IL 60561
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
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.
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
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.