Spotlight on Toy Bank Donor: Epoch Everlasting Play

April 10, 2018 | Epoch Everlasting Play, formerly International Playthings, has been a consistent donor to The Toy Foundation’s (TTF) Toy Bank since 2005. The Parsippany, NJ-based company has been particularly involved in TTF’s annual holiday toy drive in partnership with The TODAY Show. To date, Epoch Everlasting Play has donated nearly half a million dollars’ worth of toys and games to children in need through The Toy Bank.

Toy News Tuesday editors sat down with Michael Varda, Epoch Everlasting Play’s president and CEO, to discuss philanthropy’s central role in the company’s mission.

What types of toys have been donated to The Toy Bank?

The range of products donated includes playset dolls and accessories, arts-and-crafts activity sets, action games, and toddler and preschool toys from our portfolio of brands including Calico Critters, Aquabeads, Whipple, Kidoozie, Earlyears, Game Zone, and more.

Why is it important to support The Toy Bank? How does philanthropy fit in with your company’s mission?

We are dedicated to providing quality play products that help children have fun throughout their growth and development. The company believes that the learning benefits of such products should be readily available and accessible to all children, regardless of their socioeconomic status. By donating to programs such as the Toy Bank, we can play a small role in helping all children receive the tools and support they need to grow successfully.

What are some of the developmental skills the toys you donated help build in children?

Our toys aid in kids’ development of fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. There are also cognitive benefits to our toys when kids engage in role play and imaginative play.  

How can these skills help disadvantaged children?

For children who are dealing with serious issues of any kind, from home life struggles, to health issues or any circumstance that leads to stressful situations, having a toy or game that enables them to enter another world – even just for a short period of time – can be extremely beneficial to them. For instance, imaginative play with our Calico Critters line can help them express their emotions and feelings where they otherwise might not be able to or feel comfortable doing.

This article is part of a regular series focused on the philanthropic work of toy companies. Previously, Lulu Jr. was highlighted.