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Spotlight on: Cradles to Crayons

Since 2006, Cradles to Crayons Philadelphia has provided children in need with essential items they need to thrive – at home, at school, and at play.

This year, when we asked you to nominate local businesses and individuals for our annual LOVE Awards, we also asked you to vote for a non-profit beneficiary for our awards party raffle ticket sales to support. Overwhelmingly, you selected Cradles to Crayons Philadelphia, and we couldn’t be happier to support such a worthy cause.


In the greater Philadelphia area, more than 300,000 children live in poverty. Since 2006, Cradles to Crayons Philadelphia has sought to reach these kids, providing children from birth through age 12 living in homeless or low-income situations with essential items they need to thrive – at home, at school, and at play.


Annual campaigns like their “Ready for School” initiative activate individuals and businesses in the community towards providing resources and comfort to kids in need—in that example, it is to distribute new backpacks filled with custom “KidPacks” to help kids start school prepared and excited to learn. After items are collected, volunteers at Cradles to Crayons will hand-select items to create and distribute packages for specific kids—with shoes, clothing, and other essentials tailored to each individual child’s needs. Cradles to Crayons also have annual campaigns focused on babies, winter coats, and spring clothing.


Photograph by Laura Swartz.


This is largely achieved by engaging the community to donate money, items, and their time—or as Cradles to Crayons puts it, “making it convenient to turn compassion into action.” Kids as young as 5 years old can volunteer at their new Giving Factory in East Falls, so it is a great way to give back as a family and to encourage helping others early. You can sign up to volunteer on their site—they even have family days on Tuesdays and Saturdays.


There are many other ways people can get involved, too, which Cradles to Crayons details on their site. Cradles to Crayons always accepts monetary donations on their website, and you can find lists of what their highest need items are every season.


You can learn more about Cradles to Crayons, and get involved at cradlestocrayons.org/Philadelphia



Lead photograph courtesy of Cradles to Crayons.

Contributing Writer