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Second Chance Toys was among those honored today as New Jersey’s 2019 recycling leaders. 

Receiving the award is Bronna Lipton, Executive Director of Second Chance Toys with Steve Rinaldi, NJDEP, Bureau of Sustainability.

The DEP and Association of New Jersey Recyclers co-sponsored the symposium and luncheon, where recycling awards are presented to outstanding businesses, organizations, local government agencies, and individuals who have made significant contributions to recycling in New Jersey.

“I commend these award winners for their work to promote recycling and educate their communities about the importance of diverting waste to better protect our natural resources,” Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Catherine R. McCabe said. “New Jersey is consistently a national leader in recycling, and we applaud the winners for going above and beyond to help safeguard the environment.”

“We proudly honor the award winners for their focused and innovative efforts to keep our environment clean and healthy,” said Francis Steitz, Acting Assistant Commissioner for Air Quality, Energy and Sustainability. “We hope promoting their accomplishments will inspire others to adopt better recycling practices.”

Second Chance Toys is honored to recieve this prestigious award.

When approached to have their employees clean hundreds of toys collected by Westfield Conservation Center, GEP, a software company located in Clark, NJ, was eager to get involved in  this community service project. And the GEP volunteers tackled the massive collection head on, inspecting and cleaning 800 toys in a matter of hours!

Westfield Conservation Center had been collecting toys since October and quickly filled the original shed designated for the effort. Recognizing the popularity of the program, the town switched to a 20-foot container to hold the toys. By the time GEP volunteers arrived on site in August to tackle the job, the container was filled to the brim. In total, the combined efforts of Westfield Conservation Center and GEP kept 800 toys and 3,200 pounds of plastic out of landfills. That very same day, 1-800-GOT-JUNK? transported the toys to two organizations in Plainfield for distribution. With the reuse of these toys, 1,600 children are impacted socially, emotionally, physically and creatively with each round of shared play!

Westfield has started its collection efforts again and expects to fill the 20-footer soon!

For the 7th year in a row, Viacom volunteers have participated with Second Chance Toys in a toy cleaning event on Viacommunity Day. Volunteers broke all previous records with an incredible 1,750 toys, inspected, cleaned and bagged at Fair Lawn Recycling Center.


This was a tremendous effort that required everyone pitching in at a good pace to get the job done in a little over 3 hours' time.  All 25 volunteers worked as a team, taking on roles where they saw there was a need. It was really heartening to witness the camaraderie and teamwork. This is what employee engagement is all about. Many of the volunteers have been coming back year after year and Second Chance Toys is so grateful for their enthusiasm.

In total, Viacom volunteers cleaned 1,750 toys, keeping 7,000 lbs. of plastic out of landfills and enabling 5 organizations in Paterson and East Orange to receive the toys that are now impacting 3,500 children with each round of shared play. 


Team captain, Gina Planas remarked, "What an exhilarating feeling to see how much we were able to accomplish and know this would immediately benefit so many children in need and the environment!”   

A permanent collection of gently used plastic toys is going on in Chantilly, VA. Thanks to the local 1-800-GOT-JUNK?, toys are being collected at their Chantilly garage all year long. But to make these toys ready for donation, they also need to be cleaned.

In steps Booz Allen to the rescue, whose Booz Allen Cares program encourages community service and provides for local volunteers. Thanks to this wonderful program, Second Chance Toys enlisted the involvement of 8 amazing volunteers who, in 3 hours' time, cleaned 650 toys!

We are grateful to all participants for making a difference in the lives of so many children at Northern VA Family Services Head Start and for helping to keep 2,600 lbs. of plastic out of our landfills. Your impact was tremendous and we look forward to continuing the effort. 

How does Second Chance Toys keep the engines running? We depend on the generosity of individuals, like you, that not only volunteer time and effort to collecting toys, but support us with monetary donations as well. We know from your feedback that the excitement of the collections and seeing firsthand the impact made on children and the environment is the inspiration behind your participation and support.  We are most grateful for your generosity.

We are also dependent upon our valued corporate supporters, that award us grants for the programs in which they participate. They understand that it not only takes volunteers, but that funding makes it possible to carry on our mission with greater impact. 

Making Our Corporate Programs Turnkey
There is much going on behind the scenes at Second Chance Toys to keep collections and toy cleaning events both engaging and running smoothly. Our Recycling Center/Corporate Clean Team Programs, our Green Team Programs and our Corporate Toy Collection Programs require pre-planning, logistics, matching with local organizations, on site staffing, setup, cleaning materials, transport of the toys and impact reports. We are very busy working to ensure that participation is easy and fun!

"Our corporate volunteers keep coming back year after year," notes Bronna Lipton, Executive Director of Second Chance Toys. "Part of the reason is, it's fun and meaningful and they get to witness firsthand the results of their efforts."


Viacom, Citi, Vonage, Health & Wellness Partners, 1-800-GOT-JUNK?, Booz Allen Hamilton, GEP, Kidville, NJ Natural Gas, and E*TRADE all partner with us in various ways that we tailor to meet their goals. Whether it is conducting internal collections, participating in our employee engagement toy cleanings at recycling centers, holding collections in multiple offices or stores, or volunteering to transport large toy collections to local organizations, our corporate supporters are vital to keeping our mission alive. 

Getting Involved
Showing support for Second Chance Toys means aligning with both a Good and Green cause, participating in a meaningful community service project and making a real difference in our environment and the lives of those less fortunate.

If you would like to support us financially, simply click here to donate online. Please contact us at info@secondchancetoys.org if you are interested in volunteer opportunities for individuals or corporations. 

For the past five years, Booz Allen has volunteered with Second Chance Toys during Earth Month. Offices from around the country sign on to collect the toys and then volunteers work together to clean the toys before they are donated.

This year, 13 offices in 6 states plus the District of Columbia participated, and Second Chance Toys matched them with local organizations to receive their collections. Their efforts yielded a total of 1,255 toys that were kept out of landfills and put into the hands of children in need. That translates to 5,020 pounds of plastic that were kept out of the waste stream!

"It's great to see so many of our offices participating in an activity that promotes sustainability and at the same time helps children," exclaimed Elizabeth Wayt, Director Sustainability PMO, Booz Allen Hamilton.

Second Chance Toys is grateful for Booz Allen's annual participation in our Earth Month collection and for the generous grant they provide to support our programs.

Thank you all for another successful effort. 

Bradley Hills Elementary School (Bethesda, MD) partnered with Second Chance Toys as part of our annual "Bradley Beautiful" spring picnic event. This event brings the school community together and celebrates the great outdoors -- with activities including gardening, grounds clean up, recycling education, and collection of various household goods for donation / re-use and recycling (in addition to food, music, dancing and games!).  This year, we recycled lightly used plastic toys with Second Chance Toys and donated them to A Wider Circle. We also collected used sports equipment to donate to Level the Playing Field, plus used crayons and batteries for recycling.

For the 5th year in a row the River Edge Green Team had their annual toy drive with Second Chance Toys.  This is an organization that we love working with.  The gently used plastic toys are collected and given to different organizations  in New Jersey that serve children in need.  This year we worked with Joi’s Angels from East Orange and New Destiny School #6 in Paterson.  Due to the large amount of toys we collected, New Destiny was able to come and handpick the toys. Joi's Angels serves all different ages and completely loaded up their truck. Second Chance Toys not only selected the organizations that were matched with our collection, but they scheduled the arrival times to make donation of the many toys turnkey.

This program is a great way to save toys from going into the oceans and landfills, and brings life back to toys so other children can use them... a real live Toy Story!!!  It gives our community great pleasure to know the toys go to good use.  Over the years, we have seen that giving up beloved toys is not as easy as we may think. They represent memories with our own children. Seeing our toys move on is like sending our children off to college for the first time.  At least with Second Chance Toys we know the toys will keep on providing others with the tools of play and help them socially, emotionally and developmentally.  It sure is better than cluttering up our landfills!!  Our residents feel great about our program and save up each year, knowing that they can count on our collection during Earth Month.

We plan on doing this collection as long as possible. If I see toys on the curb I pick them up for our collection the following year.  It has become a habit to me and it’s a good for us all to have. In fact, that's how Second Chance Toys got started!

River Edge Green Team averages about 1000+ toys at our 4 -hour collection! Look for our announcements on our Green Team's new Instagram and Facebook pages.

Till next year save your toys... we’ll be back again. -Bonnie Stewart is the River Edge Green Team Chairperson

 

 

Even one child is enough for you to find your house suddenly inundated with toys. Families have a way of slowly accruing more and more toys, of a whole range of shapes and sizes. Apart from cluttering the house, causing dust and generally being a nuisance, there are also very good reasons to get rid of a few toys. When you have so many in your house that your kids don’t feel the added benefit of each, it might be time to start thinking about donating to those less fortunate. It can be a real challenge to persuade your little ones that this is the right thing to do, so here are a few ways to go about it.

  1. Build It Up as a Tradition
    If, from when your offspring are very little, even only a year old you are able to introduce a routine of giving away certain toys which have fallen out of favor, they are far less likely to ever cause a fuss over it in years to come. Anything which we grow up with being set in stone has a hold over us as we get older. So, this is a pretty good habit to get your kids into from as soon as they are old enough to have a collection of toys.

  2. Do It Around Christmas or Birthday Time
    Picking these times of year to donate toys can bring some unforeseen benefits. For a start, your kids are about to receive gifts and toys anyway. Another benefit is it allows you to bring in an element of thinking about other children and their situations, eagerly awaiting birthdays and Christmas times too. You can sell the idea that your child’s toys will make others less fortunate get excited about receiving a gift too.

  3. Inspire and Teach Empathy
    Related to the point above, using toy donations as a good little case study in empathy can be a great way to get your child to display it and to even learn what it is. You should ask your child to imagine that they didn’t have any toys and that their parents couldn’t afford to buy them. Ask them how they might feel and if receiving a good as new toy would help them feel better or happy in that situation. Empathy is an important life skill, so it’s a great way to practice it.

  4. Reward Them
    If your child does do a good job at giving up some of their toys and not complain about it, you should reward them. With young children, rewarding positive behavior is preferable to punishing negative behavior, so when the opportunity arises, take it.

  5. Make A Challenge Out of It
    Get your children to go on a hunt around the house to find any and all toys which could be considered unnecessary or unwanted. Then see how many points each of them gets based on their collection and reward them!

Conclusion

It will likely be a bit of a struggle, but finding where you can save space, clean up your house and benefit the lives of those with considerably less than you makes donating toys worthwhile. Get your kids involved and you’ll teach them a lesson that can last a lifetime.

Chloe Bennet is an educator from Essayroo and BoomEssays services. She researches new teaching trends and reviews latest edtech gadgets. Chloe tutors at UKWritings academic website.

Our first drive with Second Chance Toys could not have gone any better! We have many parents with all different backgrounds in our department at Capital One and this organization really touched many of their hearts on a personal level.  We were matched with a local YMCA that picked up the toys and even gave one of us a hug saying "Thank you! This is the biggest donation we have gotten this year!"  It was really inspiring to watch everyone come together for a good cause and to help the kids have a wonderful holiday season.  I will never forget this opportunity and organization.  I will always share the experience and how wonderful everyone was!

SCT was so easy to work with and if I had any questions or concerns their quick replies made it flawless with no stress at all! Thank you for giving us this opportunity SCT!

 


In Trumbull, CT we have been collecting via the Second Chance Toys model for many years.  Early on we posted flyers, put adds in the paper, had local politicians show up for press shots, but as we spoke to people dropping toys off, the response as to how did you hear about us was almost uniform…Facebook. 

In Trumbull, we have the Moms Facebook page, the Dads page, the school pages, the Republican-tilt page, the Democrat-tilt page. If we put our drive announcement on those pages, we reach everyone in town who is paying attention.  Ten minutes of marketing, maybe two or three times before kick-off and we are guaranteed 500+ used toys year in, year out.  Apart from the December weather during the holiday collections (surprise…people still drop off when it's snowing), the part to plan for is the back end. Second Chance Toys arranges wherever possible for the organizations to pick up the toys. Occasionally, that is not always possible. Befriend someone with a truck! Apart from that, if you have a location to store the toys, you are all set.  If there is an issue with your donation, our friends at Second Chance Toys are whizzes at rectifying any the situation.

This is a great project for high schoolers or a service organization.  Keep score and in a short time you will be able to say thousands of toys went to as many children in need for a second chance, instead of to a landfill.

 

For the past 10 years in a row, Temple Sharaay Tefila has been mobilizing parents and kids to donate their outgrown plastic toys to benefit local children in need. Their participation year after year, which has helped tens of thousands of children and kept as many pounds of plastic out of our landfills, exemplifies Tikkun Olam, a Jewish concept defined by acts of kindness to help repair the world.

Every year our partners, 1-800-GOT-JUNK? help us by picking up the large collection of toys at Sharaay Tefila and delivering them to the designated organization. This year P.S. 112, Jose Celso Barbosa School, was the recipient and each child got to pick out a toy. Both the students and staff were delighted.

Congregant Alan Branfman, has coordinated the synagogue's drives year after year and makes it a point to attend the toy distribution at the organization itself. "There is nothing like seeing the children's faces light up when they are given a good-as-new colorful toy," he exclaimed. "It is wonderful to be able to have such a huge impact on so many children simply through reuse of outgrown toys," he continued.

Second Chance Toys is especially grateful for the participation and toy donations of the Sharaay Tefila nursery school. Many people were directly involved in making the collection such a success, including: Amy Schwach (Executive Director), Bonnie Blanco (Early Childhood Director), Jennifer Blaustein (Early Childhood Committee Chair), Taylor Chesney and Laura Erlich (Parents Association Co-Leaders) and Allison Dwork and Ali Berkley (Mitzvah Moms).

Thank you all for your continued participation and goodwill. Second Chance Toys is so very grateful. 

 

 


Since 2015, Ridgewood Savings Bank has collected toys for Second Chance Toys. This year, with Amral Khan once again spearheading the collection, the bank brought in an amazing 300 gently used plastic toys to benefit Cienfuegos Foundation in Queens, NY. Bethania Perkins, Cienfuegos Foundation founder exclaimed, "We are so grateful for the efforts of Ridgewood Savings Bank and honored to be the recipients of these wonderful toys that help the children we serve in numerous ways."

Thank you Ridgewood Savings Bank for your dedication and goodwill. We greatly appreciate all that you do!

 


The Coolidge School Green Team's mission is to help foster for students an appreciation and respect for nature while being conscientious of our impact on the environment and helping others. Second Chance Toys is a perfect partner with its core mission to give to others while keeping plastic out of landfills!

For 3 weeks leading up to the holidays, Coolidge students donated gently used toys which were cleaned and sorted by our "Green Ambassadors" for delivery to Community Outreach Services in Paterson. Reverend Brown and his friends graciously received hundreds of toys that would be part of the children's center. There was lots of love and gratitude shared by all!

Coolidge is grateful to have been a part of such a special green project with Second Chance Toys that benefitted Community Outreach Services.

 

Katie Chardoussin, a parent of two children, in Warren County, NJ, contacted us last fall to see how she and her children could participate in a collection of gently used plastic toys. She was interested in the fact that they could learn from this experience firsthand from the experience and benefit from the teachable moments that Second Chance Toys provides.

They tackled the collection head on by contacting friends, family and neighbors to donate. Their very first effort yielded an incredible 150 toys! Second Chance Toys matched their collection with Norwescap Family Success Center. Katie and her children asked if they could deliver the toys themselves and add to the life lessons her children could experience.

After they dropped off the toys, Katie noted, " Today we dropped off the 150 toys our family collected to Denise at Norwescap! She added, "It was such a great experience for our family, especially my children, who have a new meaning of giving!"

Many thanks to the Chardoussin family for your amazing donation of toys and for recognizing the benefits that your own children can reap from our collection experience. 

 

For many years now, Viacom has been participating twice yearly with Second Chance Toys to help collect and clean toys for children in need. During the holidays, we have been able to count on the good work of the controllers group, that consistently collects large numbers of beautiful and good-as-new plastic toys for us year after year. "It is always fun and rewarding to see our efforts going to make children happy," said Wanda Farag, who spearheaded the controllers' collection. "We look forward to this every year and save up our toys in anticipation," she added.

With sustainability a priority at Viacom, Anthony Agate, Senior Director, Event Operations & Food Services, arranged for his group to participate as well. He asked everyone to bring a gently used plastic toy to the holiday party celebrated by various teams. They not only collected a good number of toys, but Anthony also arranged for delivery of all the toys collected by both groups at Viacom.

The children at Malcom X II Phase B low income housing apartments were the beneficiaries of the beautiful toys that brought lots of holiday cheer for them and their parents.

Thank you Viacom!  

 

Second Chance Toys was thrilled to work with two Brooklyn Boulders locations that volunteered to collect toys for the holidays. They put the word out to their respective communities, Gowanus and Queensbridge and in a little over two weeks' time they both received an overwhelming response. When asked how they felt about their first collection, Griffin Sweet of Brooklyn Boulders Queensbridge noted, "We were happy to provide our communities with a responsible way to get rid of their outgrown toys." Adding to that, Carina Finn of Brooklyn Boulders Gowanus said, "Knowing that the toys would end up in the hands of local children in need really resonated with our clients"

Brooklyn Boulders Gowanus and Queensbridge collected 200 and 170 toys respectively. Thank you for providing a drop off location to your communities and for making a tremendous impact!

We are so grateful for the enthusiastic participation of the Island Heights Environmental Committee that collected 50+ beautiful and good-as-new toys. They were thrilled to keep them out of the waste stream and put them into the hands of children at local organization, O.C.E.A.N / Head Start L.E.A.P. in Ocean County, NJ. Pictured here is Tanara Hall helping a representative from O.C.E.A.N. load up the toys to be loved once again!


Second Chance Toys recently designated Archer Elementary School in the Bronx (NY) to receive a collection of toys. The toys have had a huge impact on many of the students, used not only for play at recess, but in the classrooms and very importantly, in counseling sessions.

This is about two of the many students that were positively impacted by the donation of toys. The boys in the photo have personal challenges and are having difficulty coping with overwhelming emotions. It has been affecting their classroom behaviors and academics. They will throw tantrums in the classroom, oftentimes fight with their peers, and run away from the classroom.

As we started using the donated toys in the counseling sessions, they have become more expressive and motivated to make positive choices.  They are learning proper social and emotional skills through play, and it is helping them in and outside of the classroom. As their guidance counselor, I can definitely see that they have enhanced self-esteem, despite their challenges at home.

Chisa Sealy is a guidance counselor at Archer Elementary School in the Bronx.

 

 They are the companies that support the Second Chance Toys mission with their participation and generous grants. You can find their logos proudly displayed on our homepage. If you click on any one of them, you will read about their participation and generosity that help further our mission. From conducting collections, cleanings and transporting the toys, to staging promotions and multi-office participation in various states, these companies have made a real difference for Second Chance Toys.

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