Chicago, IL – Specialty toy manufacturers recently donated five truckloads of toys to nearly a dozen Bright Spaces® sites in Philadelphia, Penn., following the largest-ever ASTRA Marketplace & Academy trade show and conference. The products went from the Pennsylvania Convention Center, where Marketplace & Academy was held, to the intake center and several family shelters that are run by the Philadelphia Office of Homeless Services for use in Bright Spaces programs located in the shelters.
Staff from the Pennsylvania Convention Center and the Philadelphia Office for Homeless Services display toys donated by ASTRA retailers following ASTRA’s Marketplace & Academy.
“Giving back to Philadelphia was a fitting way to end a successful ASTRA Marketplace & Academy on the 25th anniversary of our founding,” said Kimberly Mosley, Present of ASTRA. “It was a collaborative effort, with the convention center team connecting ASTRA to the city agency that provides critical services to homeless children or children impacted by domestic violence. Our show exhibitors are always generous, but when they heard that the toys will be used in warm, safe, enriching places where play helps children heal from trauma and experience the joy of childhood, many were eager to participate.”
Cameron Passmore of Green Toys Inc. in Sausalito, Calif., commented, “We are thrilled to donate every year after Marketplace & Academy as a way to give back to the communities that so graciously support us for the show. We love the ASTRA community and we love to help kids, so this program is a great fit for our company’s values.”
In the Bright Spaces programs that are housed in Philadelphia homeless shelters, children can play, families can gather, and agency staff can provide programming and services to families in need. The goal is to create a safe, supportive atmosphere to foster resiliency in children and build stronger families.