In-Kind Donations Are Just As Important!

In-kind is the best kind! Over the years, more and more companies have donated products and services to Holiday Helpers. We are so thankful for these donations as they reduce our spending costs and allow us to add more gifts to our family packages.

There are a few common questions that we get asked about in-kind products and services.

 1.   What type of items do you accept?

We accept almost anything so long as it is new and has not been used. Some items that we are looking for this year include:

  • Wrapping items/supplies: wrapping items, tape, tape and more tape (you would be surprised how much tape we use!), lables, corrugated boxes, scissors, sharpies
  • Household goods: sheets, pots and pans, small household appliances (blenders, microwaves, kettles), glasses, cutlery
  • Nice stuff for moms (many of our families are single parent families): body lotions, clothing, makeup, indulgences
  • Baby items: diapers, creams, crib sheets, bottles, blankets, formula, baby food (pouches, cereal, etc.) sleepers (6 months- 2 years), playpens, car seats, etc.
  • Kids toys and learning tools: backpacks, sports equipment, pens and paper, notepads, books, arts and crafts
  • Family entertainment: board games, aquarium/ROM/AGO/Science Centre passes
  • Teenager items (teens love xmas too and there are so few items for them)- clothes, makeup, movie passes
  • Sports equipment: soccer balls, basketballs, road hockey, kids bikes, badminton, etc.

 2.   What if our item is not listed above?

Please send us an email at  We don't usually turn down an in-kind offer but it has to make sense for our families. Many families are coming from shelters and have little to begin with. Some fun and more unusual items from our past include: adult books, bath mats, kids bikes, bath soaps, purses, household cleaning products, toothpaste and candy. All have been useful items for our families.

3.   What about food, drinks and coffee? Tim Horton’s certificates?

We don't give food items to our families as we provide them with a $100 grocery gift card BUT we certainly need food and treats to keep our volunteers motivated! Our wrapping weekend lasts approximately 10 days each year in which hundreds of volunteers come to our warehouse to help sort and wrap gifts. We like to provide coffee and light refreshment to the volunteers over their 3-4 hour shifts.  

4.   What about movie, museum or aquarium certificates and passes?

Holiday Helper families typically do not have extra funds to enjoy these activities so passes or gift cards would be very appricaited. We'll ensure they are given to deserving families with the appropriate age groups.

5.   What about gift cards? Grocery store cards?

Gift and grocery store cards are very helpful as we use them to buy essential items like winter jackets and hats and scarves. For the grocery cards, we will pass them onto the families or use them to purcahse wrapping supplies and coffee and snacks for our volunteers.

6.   What about TTC tokens?

We often get passes donated to AGO, ROM or Science World. The Toronto Raptors also donate tickets to the families. However, it is expensive to take a family on public transport so we like to include TTC tokens.

 7.   Do we get a tax receipt for our in-kind items?

Unfortunately, the Canadian government does not allow charities to give out tax receipts.

 8.   Who should I contact to make an in-kind donation?

Please send an email to

 9.   Will someone come and pick up the stuff?

Each in-kind donation is treated on a case by case basis. Since we are a very small charity with little resources, we prefer to have you drop up it off at our warehouse, but we understand if that is not possible for everyone and we will try to arrange someone to pick up the stuff.

 10.  What is the last date I can donate inkind items?

We like to have all items at the warehouse before we start finalizing all the family bundles. The last day for in-kind is Dec 5th.

 11.  I only have a few items to donate, is that ok?

Perfectly fine. Each family gives us a wishlist with a variety of items, so we will always find a great home for your item. Even if it is one brand new microwave, we will find the family that has asked for that and they will be so happy!

 12.  Do you accept gently used items?

No, we do not. All the items given to the Holiday Helper families is brand new. Used items can be donated to a variety of other organizations like the Canadian Diabetes Assocation or the Salvation Army.