Fort Bliss Military Families Receive Thousands of New Toys from Toy Industry Foundation

FortBliss1Nearly 3,000 children living with their families on military base Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas were treated to a special toy giveaway on April 17 hosted by the Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) and national partner Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) Military Services.

Families stationed at Fort Bliss, as well as resident members of the Air Force, Marines, National Reserves, and others, enjoyed a “Day of Play” that included bouncy houses and games, music and entertainment, and a pizza party.  Children of all ages received brand new toys, games, and stuffed animals donated by generous toy manufacturers. Gifts distributed at this event were generously donated by Alex, DuneCraft, Ganz, Gibout Toys, Hasbro, Lee Magic Pen, Lego, Look Out World, Mattel, MindWare, RBI Toys, Reeves International, Safari Ltd., and TMI Toy Marketing International.

The event was held as part of the joint TIF /BGCA Play Comforts program – the first-ever national toy distribution initiative to serve every branch of the U.S. military.  Through Play Comforts, toys and games donated by caring toy companies are delivered on an annual basis to families on dozens of U.S. military installations at home and abroad. Now in its fourth year of operation, the program has provided more than $3.5 million in toys for children of military families.


National CASA Association, Toy Industry Foundation Launch National Partnership with Volunteer Event

National CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) Association and the Toy Industry Foundation have partnered at the national level to provide toys and increase the number of trained CASA volunteers to benefit children in the foster care system. The Toy Industry Foundation will donate more than 25,000 toys to CASA this year. The launch of this partnership will take place at the Toy Industry Foundation’s Play Your Part volunteer event on April 5 in Los Angeles.

National CASA, a network of 946 community based programs that recruit, train, and support citizen-volunteers to advocate for the best interests of abused and neglected children in courtrooms and communities, will be working with CASA programs across the country to identify and distribute the donated toys to children in the foster care system.

Former foster youth, CASA volunteers, and special guests will share their personal stories at Play Your Part, joining more than 100 Toy Industry Foundation volunteers from Southern California toy companies to package and sort more than 16,000 toys for local foster youth. Walmart is donating the use of two tractor-trailers to ship toys to destinations throughout Southern California, and World Vision has donated the space for the event. Mattel, Leapfrog Enterprises, Funrise Toy Corporation, and Women in Toys are additional event sponsors.

Last Chance to Bid on Rare Auction Items

There’s only one day left to bid on unique toy collectible items in the Toy Industry Foundation’s online charity auction, via eBay Giving Works. Bidding closes today at 3 p.m.

Auction proceeds will benefit the Toy Industry Foundation to help bring play into the lives of underprivileged and under-served children. For more information, contact the Toy Industry Foundation at (646) 454-5581 or tifinfo@toyindustryfoundation.org.

Military Families in San Diego Receive Toys and Games from Toy Industry Foundation

Nearly 1,000 children of military personnel stationed in San Diego, Calif., were treated to a toy giveaway on March 2 by the Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) and national partner Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) Military Services

Families stationed at Naval Base Coronado were joined by marine families from nearby Camp Pendleton for a fun-filled day of play, crafts, entertainment, and food. The children were gifted with brand new toys and games donated by toy manufacturers from across the nation.

The event was the first of many toy giveaways to be held on military bases this year as part of the joint TIF/BGCA Play Comforts program–the first-ever national toy distribution program to serve every branch of the military. Now in its fourth year of operation, the program has provided more than $3.5 million in toys for children residing on U.S. military bases.

Gifts distributed at this event were donated by Barb-a-Mel Books, Cartamundi, Cloud B, DuneCraft, Elenco, GANZ, Gibout Toys, Hasbro, Kidz Toys, Lee Magic Pen, LEGO, Look Out World, Mattel, MindWare, RBI Toys, Squishable, TMI Toy Marketing International, and Wonder Forge.

Toy Industry Foundation Brings Holiday Cheer to Families on Hawaii Military Bases

More than 3,000 boys and girls living with their parents on Hawaii’s Schofield Barracks and Fort Shafter U.S. Army bases were treated to two days of toy giveaways on December 4 and 6,respectively. The events were hosted by the Toy Industry Foundation in partnership with Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) Military Services, who brought the spirit of the season to military families complete with gifts, holiday carolers, and the lighting of two of the largest Christmas trees in the country.   [Read more...]

Playrific Closes $1.7 Million in Funding for Personalized Children’s Media Service

Playrific, a leading digital media aggregation service for children, has closed an oversubscribed $1.7 million round of equity financing. The funding was lead by Golden Seeds, a network of angel investors dedicated to investing in early stage companies founded and led by women, with participation of investors from a variety of other angel groups including Launchpad Venture Group, Walnut Ventures, Northeast Angels, and Maine Angels[Read more...]

Toy Industry Foundation Crosses Pacific, Brings Play to U.S. Military Families in Japan

Nearly 1,000 boys and girls stationed with their parents on Kadena U.S. Air Force Base in Japan were treated to an extraordinary day of gifts and play on November 1 by the Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) and partner Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) Military Services. Joined by Marine families stationed in nearby Okinawa, the children experienced a toy giveaway event, providing relief and a reminder of home to kids living with their parents so far away from what is familiar.

The TIF/BGCA Play Comforts program is the first-ever national toy distribution program to serve every branch of the military and is now in its third year of operation. Since the partnership launched, TIF has provided more than 200,000 toys to BGCA for children on U.S. military bases.

Through the Play Comforts program, toys donated to TIF’s Toy Bank by generous toy makers and merchants are delivered to families on dozens of U.S. military installations at home and abroad all year long.

TIF Annual Holiday Toy Drive Opens Nov. 1

The Toy Industry Foundation’s annual Holiday Toy Drive will be open from November 1 to December 31. The Holiday Toy Drive may be supported in three ways:

  • TODAY Show Holiday Toy Drive: Each year, TIF partners with TODAY to share the toy industry’s generosity with the nation. Companies that donate toys to this program are listed on the TODAY Show website; if $150,000 worth of toys are collected, TIF will appear on-air to speak about what the Foundation does and how toy companies are making a difference.
  • Play Comforts: In partnership with Boys & Girls Clubs of America Military Services, TIF will have helped 50,000 children of military families throughout 2012. Approximately 600 more toys are needed to finish the year.
  • General Donation to Toy Bank Network of 1,000 Charities: The Toy Bank works with children’s charities across the globe that help kids who are sick, living in disaster zones, underprivileged, or otherwise in need. Toys donated to the general network of charities will be matched with the appropriate recipients.

While the Toy Drive remains open through Dec. 31, donation forms must be submitted by Dec. 1 to ensure that the toys make it into the hands of children in time for the holidays.

For information on how to make a gift, contact thetoybank@toyindustryfoundation.org. Donation forms for the TODAY Show giving option can be accessed online.

Toy Industry Foundation Launches TOTY Tribute Book Campaign

Courtesy of Toy Industry Association

The Toy Industry Foundation is now accepting ads for the Toy of the Year Awards (TOTY) Tribute Book.  The Tribute Book is the official take-home program for guests at the TOTY Awards Ceremony in February that provides information on top toys, industry icons, and philanthropy. It also features award nominees, Hall of Fame inductees, and past TOTY highlights. To reserve an add in the Tribute Book, visit The 2013 TOTY Tribute Book web page. Reservations, ad artwork, and ad payment donations are due by January 9. For more information, contact Marisa Medina at (646) 454-5581.

TIF Extends Play Connects Grant Application Deadline

The Toy Industry Foundation has extended the deadline for 2012 Play Connects grant applications. Open to all Toy Industry Association member companies in good standing, the grant program is now accepting applications until September 4. The deadline has been extended to ensure that both TIA members and their chosen children’s charities have enough time to fill out each part of the grant application before submitting the form to TIF. Up to three Play Connects grants, worth up to $10,000 each, will be awarded before the end of the year. 

Qualified applications received on or before September 4 will be reviewed by a committee comprised of members from the TIF Board of Trustees. Both full and associate TIA members may nominate a deserving charity of their choosing. More information can be found on the Play Connects website or by contacting Foundation Manager Marisa Medina.

This post was originally written by Ali Mierzejewski and published by ToyBook.com. For more news, visit www.toybook.com, follow The Toy Book on Twitter, and like The Toy Book on Facebook. The Toy Book is a bimonthly trade magazine covering the toy industry, published by Adventure Publishing Group.