Portland Fire & Rescue’s (PF&R) Toy N Joy Makerswas founded in 1914 to help provide Portland’s needy children and low income families with toys, books, and other gifts during the winter holiday season. The Toy N Joy Maker’s toy program is the largest in Oregon and has a history of working alongside local and state agencies. During December 2009, toys were given to over 8,500 children from 3,000 families living within Portland city limits. The Toy N Joy Maker’s toy program is the largest in Oregon and has a history of working alongside local and state agencies.
Although the primary season for Toy N Joy Makers is during the winter, pre-planning, organization, and preparations take place throughout the year. Donations are dropped off at throughout the year at any of PF&R’s 30 local fire stations, the Toy N Joy office, Mattress World, and Fox 12 TV Studio. Donations are then collected by Toy N Joy volunteers and transported to the distribution warehouse at 59th and NE Going. PF&R firefighters and community volunteers then get into the spirit and support the Toy N Joy Makers’ mission by dedicating time out of their busy schedules to sort donated toys into the proper age groups at the warehouse.
How Can You Help?
- Donate Toys: Throughout the year, when you are out shopping for your own children, pick out one extra present to leave with the Toy N Joy Makers, or check the family toy box for gently-used, toys that are in "like-new" condition. Please drop the toys off at any of the 30 PF&R fire stations located in Portland, Oregon. Click here for the station’s locations.
- Donate Money: Cash donations are vital to the program as proceeds are used to purchase toys and books at a wholesale level. Toy N Joy Makers is a charitable (501(c)(3)) organization (Federal Tax I.D. 93-6096777), so donations are tax deductible. Fully 98% of donations go directly into providing toys for children; less than two percent goes to overhead. Donations can be made any time during the year online at http://www.toynjoymakers.org/or send your donation by mail to Toy N Joy Makers at 5916 NE Going Street, Portland, Oregon 97218.
- Volunteer During the Winter Season: In the last two months of 2009, 18 average volunteers assisted each day taking toy request phone calls from parents, inputting requests into the computer, restocking shelves, and putting orders together for pick up. These volunteers gave an estimated 4,250 total hours of their time along with 950 hours provided by PF&R fire station crews. If you are interested in volunteering, contact Toy N Joy Makers at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (503) 823-0922 during normal business hours.