Monkeez Makes a Difference: turning philanthropy into child's play

All 3 of my kids are mad about stuffed toys, so we've got piles of them at home.  Every year I try to downsize their stuffie stash, winnowing out the ones they don't play with and letting them keep their favorites.  We recently received 3 adorable new friends that are sure to be in their favorites pile until they leave for college!

Meet Nelson (the monkey), Ozzie (the octopus) and Clover (the cow).  They're part of the Monkeez Makes a Difference group of friends.  They are so soft and cuddly, made of knit material that feel just like your favorite pair of socks.  They have a wonderfully whimsical look that's not too cutesy and not too cartoony.  Their vivid colors and sweet expressions ensured that my kids would fall in love with them at first sight.

They have magnets on their hands and feet, so you can put their hands and feet together.  This allows for all kinds of fun positions.  My kids like to make their Monkeez touch their toes, do some yoga, climb up the fridge, or monkey around on our magnetic board.

I love how they're all wearing socks on their own hands and feet.

What makes Monkeez more than just a toy is a special code on their product tag that triggers a donation worth 10% of the wholesale cost of goods to the charity of your child's choice.  Your child can go to the Monkeez Island online site, enter the code, watch videos giving an overview of the charities. Then he or she can specify which charity to donate the money to.  The charities are ones that kids can relate to, like Alex's Lemonade Stand and Best Friends Animal Society, so it's a great way to start a meaningful conversation about helping the less fortunate.  What a wonderful way to introduce your child to philanthropy and help her feel like she's making a difference!

If you're going to clutter your house with stuffies, these stuffies are definitely the ones to clutter them up with.  Big thumbs up!

Here's more information on Monkeez Makes a Difference. You can also visit their Facebook Page to learn more!

Monkeez Makes a Difference gives children the opportunity to learn and practice giving back while having fun. It also provides an innovative solution to parents, grandparents and others who are hungry for tools to help them discuss and demonstrate what it means to think of others in today’s world.

The fun and education starts with the purchase of a Genuine Monkeez and Friends plush character featuring a special Monkeez Makes a Difference tag, which are available at and at independent retailers across the country. There are more than 90 plush designs in multiple sizes to choose from in the program, including characters such as monkeys, owls, bears, lions, dogs, cats, pigs, cows, octopuses, panda bears, kangaroos, turtles, koalas, alligators, hedgehogs, elephants, hippos, zebras, frogs, bunnies and raccoons. New pint-sized pals are also part of the program, featuring smaller sizes, soft fabric and retail prices starting at just $8. Each specially marked character comes with a unique online game activation code on the tag. The products’ suggested retail prices range from $2.99 to $100, and are available at and independent retailers across the country.

With an adult’s help, children follow the instructions on the tag and visit There, they can enter the code and watch videos about each charity that partners with Monkeez Makes a Difference, including Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, Samaritan’s Purse and Best Friends Animal Society.

Children can select which charity they would like to contribute to, and Monkeez Makes a Difference donates 10 percent of the wholesale cost on their behalf. By selecting the charity of their choice, children unlock the door to an interactive and educational online world. Children can revisit as many times as they’d like to play educational games and learn more about what they can do to help others.

Disclosure: I received a product sample to facilitate my review, but have not been paid to review the product or give my opinions. Product information (in italics) was provided by Monkeez Makes a Difference.  The views and opinions expressed here are my own.

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