What do I do with…?

Wooden Toys


Why is toy waste a problem? Toys are made of complex material combinations, often different kinds of hard and soft plastics. These qualities make toys difficult to recycle. The toy industry is very profitable and so there is an abundance of toys being produced. Because of this, toys often get thrown away to make room for new ones. Too many toys are ending up in the landfill when they could be salvaged, repaired, or donated to children in need.

Examples: toy animals,‎ art and craft toys,‎ construction toys,‎ dolls,‎ educational toys,‎ electronic toys,‎ toy mascots‎, mechanical toys,‎ novelty items‎, optical toys,‎ physical activity and dexterity toys,‎ powered toys,‎ practical joke devices‎, puppetry‎, puzzles,‎ scale modeling‎ toy figurines,‎ toy instruments and noisemakers,‎ toy robots‎, toy weapons,‎ transforming toys,‎ toy vehicles,‎ water toys‎


  • Children are naturally very imaginative, therefore reconsider how many toys they actually need

  • A less messy and a tidy home is an added bonus to reducing the amount of toys you purchase

  • If you plan on having more children, keep and reuse old toys instead of buying new ones


  • Donate toys to these local nonprofit organizations that service families and children

  • YWCA Programs -- donation wish lists

    • Planet Kids needs donations of gently used toys, art supplies, and board games

  • Ronald McDonald House Missoula --  wish list

    • In need of gently used toys and DVD movies

  • Mountain Home Montana -- donation list

    • In need of baby toys and children’s books in good condition

  • During the holiday season there are toy collection programs that need donations:


  • Because toys are often made of complex plastics, they can be difficult to recycle

  • TerraCycle runs numerous recycling programs for hard to recycle items; consumers purchase boxes for recycling a particular category of item, fill up the box and send it back.


Bargain Corner
200 S California St
(406) 543-4926

Missoula Goodwill
2501 S Reserve St
(406) 549-6969

Mountain Home Montana
2606 South Avenue West
(406) 541-4663

Ronald McDonald House, Missoula
3003 Fort Missoula Rd.(406) 541-7646

Teen Challenge Thrift Store
2036 Mullan Rd
(406) 728-1171

Underground Thrift Store
705 S Higgins Ave
(406) 543-7154

YWCA Secret Seconds
920 Kensington Ave
(406) 541-3210

1136 W Broadway St
(406) 549-1610

Zootown Thrift
1444 W Broadway St
(406) 552-7732