You’ve got a trunkful of gently used baby clothes, books, and toys, but you’re not sure where to take them. You know that many large, national donation centers have strict guidelines when it comes to baby goods, and you’d really like to see your items go to someone in need. And just what exactly do you do with a used crib or car seat? Just in time for the holidays, here’s our local guide to giving to families in need.

photo: Aimee Ray via flickr

Mother and Child Education Center
Providing resources for families in need, this nonprofit accepts a wide range of gently used items for babies. It’s almost more useful to list some of the things they don’t accept, such as toys, stuffed animals, high chairs, and adult clothing. They’ve got a fabulously detailed donations page to help you sort and package your goods in a way that streamlines volunteer and staff time, so that items reach recipients more efficiently. In the event that they can’t take an item you’re looking to donate, they’re even happy to offer suggestions for alternate places. Just call. No more excuses for dumping a bunch of random stuff at Goodwill.

Mother and Child Education Center
1515 NE 41st Ave.
Portland, Or
503-249-5801
Online: momchildpdx.org

Catholic Charities’ Traveling Crib
Yes, it’s an actual crib that travels to collect new and gently used items for moms and babies in the Portland area. Schools, churches, baby showers, and businesses can “host” a crib for a designated period of time, collectively filling it with things to help children in need. You can call to donate your items directly to the program, or get together with your friends or workplace to host a crib, and make the giving go even further. Donate baby clothing up to 24 months, maternity clothing, Pack-n-Plays, play mats, bouncy seats, and strollers. Only new car seats, please, and no used bottles, stuffed animals, or cribs.

Catholic Charities Traveling Crib
Pregnancy & Parenting Support Program
Clark Family Center
2740 SE Powell Blvd.
Portland, Or
503-238-5196
Online: catholiccharitiesoregon.org

photo: Ann Dabney via flickr

With Love,

Providing clothes and other necessities to children in foster care, this nonprofit seeks your donations in new or like-new condition. Donate baby swings, strollers, high chairs, bouncy seats, baby carriers, and Pack-n-Plays that are clean, have no broken parts and have not been recalled. Check their website for a complete list of guidelines and items not accepted. Two locations in Tigard and Lake Oswego serve as drop-off spots. Check the website for days and times.

With Love,
8178 SW Durham Rd.
Tigard, Or
Online: withloveoregon.org

Impact NW
With a long history of serving families in the Portland Metro area and beyond, this nonprofit provides a wide range of free services. Many of the people they serve have only enough income for food, rent, and the bare essentials, and so Impact NW accepts donations of other much-needed supplies. While they always accept donations of new items, they accept gently used items in clean and good condition on an at-will basis only, due to limited storage space. Please call ahead to ask about available space for the item you’d like to donate. Donations can be dropped off at E Burnside & 102nd St., Mon.–Thur. from 9a.m.- 6p.m.

ADVERTISEMENT

Impact NW
10055 E. Burnside
Portland, Or
503-721-1740
Online: impactnw.org

Central City Concern
Central City Concern serves families impacted by homelessness, mental illness, poverty and addictions. They gladly accept donations of gently used children’s items, and right now they are most in need of crib bedding, toddler bedding, twin bedding for boys and girls, co-sleepers, and soft-structured baby carriers. Check their website for a complete list. Donations can be brought to the main office, Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-5 p.m. With questions or for additional hours, contact Donor Relations Manager Catharine Hunter at catharine.hunter@ccconcern.org

Central City Concern
232 NW 6th Ave.
Portland, Or
503-200-3903
Online: centralcityconcern.org

Northwest Children’s Outreach
This faith-based nonprofit operates several distribution centers in Oregon and SW Washington, working to provide caregivers with items families need. Volunteers sort clothing, pack orders, and pick up donations. They accept clothing for newborns to teens, hygiene products, breastfeeding supplies (including pumps), nursery items, children’s safety products, toys, and books. Check their website for a complete list and for hours of operation at each location.

NW Children’s Outreach
503-828-1472
Online: northwestchildrensoutreach.org

photo: Thomas Life via flickr

Children’s Book Bank
Have your kids outgrown a portion of their at-home library? Bring your gently used books to this non-profit focused on providing children’s literature to children with limited access to books at home. Volunteers rehabilitate and bundle the books for distribution through Head Start and public schools, so please check for missing pages, mold, or other damage beyond repair before donating. Current needs include board books, picture books, alphabet books, books about numbers, colors, animals, shapes and words, story books, rhyming books, Dr. Seuss books, multicultural books and books in Spanish. Drop off at the CBB workspace in NE during office hours. Check the website for hours of operation and other details.

Children’s Book Bank
1728 NE Glisan St.
Portland, Or
503-616-3981
Online: childrensbookbank.org

Sunshine Pantry
Although this family-run foodbank focuses on feeding the hungry, they also accept gently used items for babies and children. Donate car seats (unexpired), toys, cribs, strollers, and all kinds of clothing items, especially children’s clothes. Check their website for a list of current needs, and call to arrange a pick-up of donations.

Sunshine Pantry
10895 SW 5th St.
Beaverton, Or
971-506-7827
Online: sunshinepantry.org

Insights Teen Parent Services
Dedicated to serving teen parents and their children through a wide range of free support services, this nonprofit also runs a resource closet that parents can visit by appointment to find what they need. Among other items, they’re currently accepting maternity clothes, clothing in sizes newborn-5T, toys for ages 0-5, board books, and winter coats. They also accept cribs made after December 2011, and used car seats that meet specific requirements, as listed on the website. Donations are limited to a specific list so check their website for an updated list. To make a donation, contact Office Manager Katie Schatz at kschatz@insightstpp.org or 503-239-6996.

Insights Teen Parent Services
3308 NE Peerless Pl.
Portland, Or
503-239-6996
Online: insightstpp.org

Portland Homeless Family Solutions
This nonprofit partners with Community Warehouse to help families transition from homelessness to stable housing. Their donation bin is located in the Goose Hollow Family Shelter, inside the First United Methodist Church. This is a good choice for baby clothes your little one grew out of before he ever had the chance to wear them, as Portland Homeless Family Solutions accepts only new and unused items. The Community Warehouse does NOT accept baby items, cribs, or car seats.

PHFS Donation Bin
1838 SW Jefferson
Portland, Or
Monday-Friday 1:00-5:00pm
Online: www.pdxhfs.org

Other Resources
If you’ve gone through your items and still have things you can’t seem to find a home for, check this helpful Donors Resource page to match your items with a local organization. For car seats, check the expiration date before donating. If it’s expired, recalled, missing parts, or has been in an accident, the only safe option is to recycle it. Target and Babies R’ Us run periodic car safety seat recycling campaigns throughout the year, and Far West Recycling Inc accepts stripped car seats for recycling. See The Car Seat Lady for more guidelines.

Do you have another favorite organization that accepts gently used baby and kids gear? Please leave us a note in the comments!

-Melissa Poulin