I am Swetha Dua and I coordinate the activities for Toybank in Delhi. We have many activities lined up for the next few months and are looking for volunteers in Delhi/NCR.
Toybank's basic concept is to give toys to kids who aren't so fortunate to play with them in their childhood. Toybank understands the importance of toys in any child's life and how much impact toys have on a child's mind. Though formal education for every child should be available to all kids, Toybank also stresses the need for non formal education through play.
The toys we collect are segregated according to age groups of children and are wrapped using newspapers by our volunteers. These toys are then distributed to NGOs, municipal schools through a toy distribution event.
If you are a toy donor and would like to wrap these toys from home itself and drop them off, that would also be alright, only thing in this case would be you might need to put a sticker on the toy after it is wrapped writing what toy it is, so while we at Toybank are segregating the toys according to age group of the children, it will make it easier for us to do the same. Please use newspapers to wrap the toys.
As a volunteer you can help Toybank -
* To arrange a Toy Collection Drive in your neighborhood, schools, apartments, corporate offices.
* In collecting the toys, segregating them according to different age groups of the children and in wrapping them.
* By participating in the toy distribution events.
Toy collection drives
- These are arranged mostly in apartments, societies or corporate offices. We spread a word about Toybank and announce toy collection drive dates so that people get enough time to dig into their toys.
- It's very important to let people know that this is not the time to clean their wardrobes but more importantly to understand that unlike them or their kids there are children who haven't had toys in their hands.
- It's important to advocate the need to give ONLY those toys which are in good condition and not those which are broken or not working. People should know that they would never give broken toys to their own kids.
- Please don't accept any toys which spread violence like guns, pistols etc and also which promote social/ economic discrimination like Barbie dolls. Barbie dolls are not accepted as we think its a lifestyle toy that could engender negative self-image in children.
- Any toys like board games, scrabble etc will be kept for the toy libraries inside hospital wards for children who are recovering. These libraries are run through Toybank.
- Employees within the corporate organization get an orientation from someone at Toybank on Child Rights and a glimpse of how children miss out on their most important right - The right to Play and leisure.
- Each employee then volunteers to donate toys to Toybank. This is done with the help of the corporate who keep cartons within the office premise to collect the toys through a collection drive.
Toy wrapping sessions
- The toys collected will go into tiny hands and Toybank understands that wrapping these will lighten up their faces. And to see the smiles on their faces is what Toybank works for. The toys collected in corporate offices are usually wrapped by the employees itself at their offices. This would help reduce transporting the toys everywhere.
Toy distribution events
After the toys are gift-wrapped, we identify NGOs/Municipal schools based on few things.
- We short-list NGOs working on providing both formal and non formal education to children.
- We also check if we have the right toys for the kids as NGOs might have kids of certain age groups and hence we would carry those for the distribution.
- We send out mails to volunteers in advance to help us in volunteering the event.
- Toybank then organizes an entire fun event with the toy donors where in they get to gift each child with a toy. Through these distribution events children are told stories with morals, employee volunteers get to spend quality time with the kids, there is plenty of interaction that takes place.
Toybank on the Internet
* Blog with us at http://blog.toybank.org
* Follow Toybank and get instant updates on Twitter.
Toybank Team - Giving back the Right to a Childhood