Donate Your Stuffed Animals

Donating unused or no longer needed items is a good thing. But, these days, because of government regulations, most charities no longer sell toys and stuffed animals. Many of these charities still take items, but they send them overseas.

If you are looking for local resources to donate those stuffed animals that you no longer need, here are a few suggestions:

Try your local animal shelter. Some accept stuffed animals for their adoptees.

You can also visit the Arlington Pediatric Center (601 S. Carlin Springs Road, Arlington, VA 22204 Ph: 703.271.8800). They give stuffed animals to their little clients who come for checkups and also pick up food and clothes when needed. You can drop them off anytime the clinic is open.

If you want to take a wider approach, look into sending your donations to far off places:

SAFE – Stuffed Animals For Emergencies maybe the place to contribute. Each state has a chapter. SAFE chapter members collect new and gently used stuffed animals, toys, books and blankets to be redistributed to emergency organizations, children’s services, hospitals, homeless shelters and many other places that help children during times of crisis.  These emergency organizations use the stuffed animals to ease the children’s’ nerves and calm their fears.  Your donations let the children know you care and help them feel a little more SAFE when they need it most. SAFE also supports other organizations such as AdoptaPlatoon, Loving Hugs, Inc, Project Smile and Project Night Night.

You can also consider sending your collection to Beanies for Baghdad. They are a bridge between our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, the children of Iraq, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Africa, Pakistan and other areas where children are in crisis. Their Network of Points of Contact pass out donations to young children who have suffered so much and have so little happiness in their life. You will be responsible for shipping your donation to the soldiers who will distribute the toys.

A word of advice: run any stuffed animals you are going to donate through your dryer for a bit to get any dust and lice out and kill any critters.

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Janet Schiesl

Janet has been organizing since 2005. She is a Certified Professional Organizer and the owner of Basic Organization. She loves using her background as a space planner to challenge her clients to look at their space differently. She leads the team in large projects and works one-on-one with clients to help the process move quickly and comfortably. Call her crazy, but she loves to work with paper, to purge what is not needed and to create filing systems that work for each individual client. Janet is a Past President of the Washington DC Chapter of the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (NAPO) and was voted 2016 Organizer of the Year by the Washington DC Chapter of NAPO.


  1. Ellen Delap on December 6, 2010 at 8:51 pm

    In Houston the fire stations take all stuffed animals too!

  2. Basic Organization on December 7, 2010 at 3:07 am

    Thanks Ellen. I never thought of the fire station. I’ll check to see if my local station will take them.

  3. Chris Ellis on August 23, 2011 at 8:21 pm
    • Basic Organization on August 23, 2011 at 10:27 pm

      Chris –
      Thanks for the information. I’ll look into The Teddy Bear Bridgade for a current client of mine. She has a huge collection of Beanie Babies that she would like to find a good home for.

      • Chris Ellis on September 28, 2011 at 3:39 pm

        Thank you for your recent post about The Teddy Bear Brigade.


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