Written by Laura Haas
The holidays can be a great time to help those less fortunate.
Below is a list of places that are accepting food, clothing, and toy donations in the greater Philadelphia area.
You can help make the holidays brighter for those in need.
Make a difference to CHOP patients by donating new toys, games, and art supplies. Call 267-426-8174 for toy donation guidelines or visit this link.
Cradles to Crayons in collecting coats, hats, gloves, diapers, bedding, and other necessities for children in need throughout the Philadelphia area. Drop-off locations are available in Manayunk, Media, Haverford, and Conshohocken. Click here for a full list of donation locations.
The mission of the Toys for Tots Program is to collect new, unwrapped toys to deliver to needy children in the community for Christmas. Donations can be made online or at Toys R Us and Babies R Us store locations.
Local Toys for Tots Drops
Nicholas Sebastian Salon in Newtown Square will collect new, unwrapped toys to be donated to Toys for Tots from 2 to 6 p.m. on Dec. 8. There will be face painting, balloon animals and food, all leading up to the annual tree lighting ceremony at St. Albans Circle when the toys will be donated to the U.S. Marine Corps. “Toys For Tots” program.
New, unwrapped toys are also being collected at the Middletown Township Building until Dec. 16 when the toys will be picked up.
From Monday, Dec. 2 through Friday, Dec. 6, Preston and Steve, from WMMR's morning radio show, will be living in an RV to collect non-perishable food items on behalf of Philabundance at the Xfinity Live parking lot at 1100 Pattison Ave. in Philadelphia.
If you cannot make it to the Camp Out, you can donate at your local ACME and ACME will deliver your purchase to the Camp Out for Hunger. You can also drop off donations at local ACME locations.
Non-perishable food, frozen turkeys, and grocery store gift cards are being collected at John’s Supply & Rental on Saturday, Dec. 14 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. All donations support local food banks.
DIFAN is a network of food cupboards throughout Delaware County that provides food to needy families. Visit its website to view the 12 Delaware County food banks that you can donate to and their hours. Locally, St. Mark's United Methodist Church in Broomall feeds about 65 families from Marple, Newtown, Springfield, Haverford, Edgmont, Radnor, and Morton. Find more information here.Nativity BVM Parish Food Pantry
The church will collect food and money after masses held on Dec. 21 and 22. Some items needed include: canned goods, healthy cereals, canned fruits and vegetables and toiletries.
The Great Valley Food Cupboard, located at 945 North Valley Forge Road in Devon at the Baptist Church in the Great Valley, provides food to local families in need. Call 610-688-5445 if you would like to make a donation or are interested in running a food drive.
Non-perishable food items and grocery store gift cards can be donated Mondays from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and Wednesdays from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. A list of recommended items to donate is available on its website.
NCFB is in need of donations of grocery store gift cards in order to put together turkey dinner boxes for area families. Food and sundry donations (i.e. shampoo, soap, dish detergent) are accepted Mondays from 7 to 8 p.m. Email NCFB if your school, club, or other organization would like to conduct a food drive.
North Light Community Center
North Light is also looking for sponsors for gifts and food baskets for the holidays. The Manyaunk-based nonprofit matches families in need by providing ages, sizes, favorite colors and interests to sponsors. In addition, food for the community cupboard is always a need. Vist NorthLightCommunityCenter.org.
The Ada Mutch Food Pantry at 9 S. Bryn Mawr Ave. in Bryn Mawr is accepting donations of non-perishable food, especially protein and chunky soups, and groceries and toiletries. We serve people in need all year round. Please drop off items from 9 a.m.-9 p.m.; ElderNet is open from 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. to personally receive the donations.
The food cupboard is open to all Lower Merion residents. The hours are Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m.-noon and 2-4 p.m. They also have nurses for flu shots and well being checks from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. on both days. For more information, call 610-525-0706.
Donations of clothing and household goods can be made at Goodwill locations throughout the Delaware Valley including Berwyn, Phoenixville, and Swarthmore.
The sales of donations help fund job training programs, employment placement services and other community-based programs for people who have disabilities or face employment challenges.
Planet Aid is a nonprofit organization that collects and recycles used clothing and shoes to help improve the lives of children and adults around the world.
Email Planet Aid to find the drop-off location nearest you or if you are interested in hosting a bin.
The Military Order of the Purple Heart's Pickup Service will come to your door to collect clothing, toys, books, and household items. Click here for a full list of accepted donations.
Salvation Army accepts tax-deductible contributions of gently used clothing, toys, and furniture. Items donated are sold in Salvation Army Thrift Stores throughout the country. Proceeds from the sale of donated items help fund Salvation Army's Adult Rehabilitation Centers which provide assistance to substance abusers and others struggling with various forms of life issues.
Call 1-800-728-7825 to schedule a free pick-up of your clothing, furniture or household items or to find out the nearest drop-off location.
The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is about neighbors helping neighbors in need of food, shelter, clothing, transportation and comfort in the Philadelphia area. Clothing donations bins are available in Ardmore, Bryn Mawr, Broomall, Springfield, Malvern, and many other locations throughout the Philadelphia area. Click here to find a clothing drop-off location near you.
Do you have a special way you like to give back during the holidays? Is there a local organization collecting food, clothing, or toys that isn't mentioned here? Please share it in the comments below.