Clothing, diapers, and toys all grow out of babies’ hands quickly. And then there’s the question of what to do with all of it—should you toss it away? Can you resell it? Or give it away?
If you’re thinking about giving baby products, it’s crucial to understand who accepts what. Many infant things are accepted as donations, but some are not, and each organization or group has its own set of guidelines.
So here are a few general tips to follow when giving baby things to maximize the impact of your donation.
What To Think About Before You Donate
You’ve decided what you’d like to contribute and what you’d like to keep. The next stage is to think about each item individually. Most organizations accept gently worn things, so evaluate each one carefully for major defects before deciding to give it. That involves making sure nothing is cracked, chipped, or ripped.
You should also clean each item separately. This could include washing fabric goods like a baby carrier or swing cover, as well as scrubbing and wiping down items like an activity cube or musical instrument. Finally, you should consult the organization’s or group’s website for information on how, when, and which things to donate.
What You Can Donate
Whereas every donation is given with the best of intentions, there is one guideline that must be followed. Here are some items that you can donate while following their guidelines:
- Baby Clothes
Most organizations and agencies accept donations of gently worn baby clothes. Before giving an item, make sure it is free of rips and tears. If you’re donating clothing via social media or a community website, gather all of the goods together in one “lot” instead of just posting individual items. You can categorize the items according to their gender, season, size, or condition (new or used).
- Car Seats, Cribs, & Gear
Car seats and cots, for example, are always in high demand. Check the item before giving to ensure you have all of the pieces. Put little items that are easily misplaced (such as adapters) in a plastic bag & tape them here to the item. You should also send the instruction manual if you have one.
Car seats, as well as cribs, aren’t the only items available. Consider donating whatever you used with your kid. High chairs, walkers, prams by a reliable pram manufacturer, bikes, bouncy seats, pack n’ plays, and other items are included.
- Postpartum Supplies
New postpartum goods for parents, including disposable adult diapers, pads, tampons, and other items, may be accepted at baby banks as long as they would be in their original, individual packaging.
You can also donate these items through social media and websites, dividing them into lots similar to how you would infant apparel. Postpartum items will not be accepted by thrift stores since they cannot be sold. Personally donate these items to a homeless shelter.
Diapers & Wipes
New diapers and wipes must always be given as gifts. Diapers and wipes might not be accepted depending on where you donate. The most flexibility is provided by social media, word-of-mouth, and community websites, especially if you only have a few diapers to donate.
A baby bank is a great place to donate these items on a regular basis.
If you’re donating to a baby bank, larger diapers, particularly sizes 4, 5, and 6, are always in demand. Wipes are in high demand as well. Yes, you can donate opened, unused diaper packages!
What You Cannot Donate
- Used Car Seats or Cribs
For safety reasons, most organizations, particularly thrift stores, do not welcome secondhand car seats. (Remember that car seats have expiry dates listed on the side of the seat.) Car seats are regularly recalled as well, making it difficult for groups to determine whether or not a given item is on the recall list.
You do have other options if it seems wasteful to throw away a worn but good, unexpired car seat. It’s also possible to donate it through word of mouth or a social media channel where you can convince the purchaser that the car seat has never been in any accidents.
- Used Bottles or Pacifiers
For hygiene reasons, most non-profits will not acknowledge used bottles or pacifiers, but then you can donate these items through other means such as social media and advertisements. Used pacifiers and bottle nipples should be tossed, especially if your child might have bitten them.
Clean and dry each bottle carefully if you want to donate bottles lacking nipples. If the bottles have multiple pieces, bag them all together to avoid losing anything.
- Used Crib Mattresses
For sanitary reasons, the ideal method to donate a slightly used crib mattress is to anyone you know. Give it a proper scrub with 1/4 cup soap diluted in a gallon of water before donating it. The solution should not be poured directly onto the mattress. Allow it to dry completely after that.
While donating stuff is an excellent way to ensure that items you’ve outgrown find a decent home and are put to good use, donation standards differ significantly.
Before giving anything, check the requirements of each charity or group—and make sure to enjoy your tax donation form, if appropriate.