Charity Application Problems Leave Tots Without Their Toys

Here’s an important lesson on following up with paperwork: nonprofit organizations near Pittsburgh (and possibly in other regions as well) learned that when they celebrate Christmas with disadvantaged children this year, there will be no toys supplied by Toys for Tots for Santa to hand out. Why? Toys for Tots and the local organizations point their fingers at each other.

The organizations say that they followed the instructions and did everything exactly the same as every year. One group has obtained the toys for their Christmas parties through Toys for Tots for 18 years, until now. What’s different this year? Toys for Tots has fewer toys available than in past years, it’s true, but the three organizations that talked to TV station WPXI claim that they did everything exactly the same as in past years.

“[W]e called Toys for Tots, and they said you didn’t submit your paperwork and you’re basically out,” the head of one organization told WPXI. “But we haven’t done anything differently than we’ve done in years past.”

Toys for Tots responded after the story aired, and explained that they haven’t “denied” toys to any groups: anyone who has received no toys and no response at this point didn’t finish the application process.

In the past 24 hours it has been reported that some non-profits have been denied toys this year. After reviewing the Toys for Tots online system there is no record of any completed request having been submitted by the agencies in question. Agencies with incomplete online applications were notified that there was insufficient information input to the system concerning their orders and toys would be provided if available. In this same communication, agencies were urged to send their clients to the Open House, where individuals in need could access toys directly.

That has left groups with planned holiday parties scrambling for toy donations from the community at the last minute.

Pittsburgh organizations in bind after learning they won’t get toys for kids [WPXI]