Unwanted jewelry turned into treasure trove for Toy Fund


December 4, 2018


Maine Gold & Silver's customers and staff combine to provide $1,300 to brighten the holidays for children this Christmas.

Staff Report  Portland Press Herald

For seven years, a South Portland company that buys and sells jewelry has turned unwanted costume jewelry into money that it gives to local charities.

The children served by the Press Herald Toy Fund are the latest to benefit from the creative fundraiser.


Maine Gold & Silver launched the charity fundraiser in 2011 after staff members watched pounds of costume jewelry and silver-plated items head to the trash heap. The business collects the items that customers cannot sell for cash and want to donate. Then it sends them to a refinery, which extracts the precious metals and waives all of its costs.

The metals are sold for cash that is then donated to a variety of local charities on behalf of Maine Gold & Silver’s customers and staff.

“Our wonderful customers have rallied behind us with this program. Once they find out what we are doing, they go home and check for anything they can donate,” Rebecca Kirby wrote in a letter to the toy fund.

Over the past seven years, the fund has raised and donated a total of about $60,000 to such organizations as the Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland or the Good Shepherd Food Bank.


The Press Herald Toy Fund recently got its generous donation with a note: “Enclosed is a check for $1,300 we hope you are able to put to good use.”

That won’t be difficult. The unwanted jewelry will buy toys to brighten the holidays for Maine children whose families are struggling to get by.

THE PRESS HERALD TOY FUND in the Spirit of Bruce Roberts uses donations from readers to provide toys to thousands of Maine children who might otherwise not receive holiday gifts because of hardships faced by their parents. Now in its 69th year, the fund is accepting applications for toys from needy families in York, Cumberland, Sagadahoc, Androscoggin, Lincoln and Knox counties.


APPLICATIONS can be downloaded at pressheraldtoyfund.org or picked up at the Press Herald’s Welcome Center, at 295 Gannett Drive in South Portland. Call 791-6672 or 791-6600 to have one mailed to you.

DONATIONS to help buy the toys can be made at pressheraldtoyfund.org or by writing checks to the Portland Press Herald Toy Fund and mailing them to the fund at P.O. Box 7310, Portland, ME 04112.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, go to: pressheraldtoyfund.org.

Maine Gold and Silver Charity Fund Exeeds $50,000 in Donations!

In 2011, we started a program with scrap metals.  The concept was conceived after staff members saw countless pounds of costume jewelry and silver plated items heading for the landfill.  Maine Gold & Silver takes those donations of metals that cannot otherwise be sold for cash. Once enough metals are collected, the staff packs them up and sends them to a refinery where minute amounts of precious metals are extracted in exchange for cash.  The refinery is also contributing to the fund by paying for all the shipping costs and waiving all processing fees. 


We first used this method of raising funds for the Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland.  We were able to give them approximately $25,000!  After seeing our generous contribution, a major corporation decided to match it.  This has enabled the ARL to add a spay/neuter clinic onsite.  We could not be happier to have worked with such great friends at the ARL! 


We then did a program to benefit the Good Shepherd Food Bank.  Every dollar donated equals $8.00 worth of food that they can provide to needy families in our community.  We were able to contribute $15,000 to this cause.  This equals approximately $120,000 in food for our neighbors! 


This year (2017) we are trying to spread the wealth, so to speak, so that we can help as many local charities as we can.  Non-profit organizations that are near and dear to our hearts will benefit.  We have donated to The American Cancer Society, Relay for Life, and The Center for Grieving Children.


"What's really great about this is that our customers are rallying behind our cause.  Once they found out what we were doing, they went home and checked for items that could be donated.  We owe it all to our great customers and amazing staff for their support," said Norman Pullen, co-owner of Maine Gold & Silver.


"This is the kind of creative fundraising that we adore," says Rick Small, president & CEO of Good Shepherd Food Bank.  "We love it when people in the community find a way to give whatever they can to help those in need.  Maine Gold and Silver's efforts are a testament to Mainers' ingenuity and compassion and we are honored to partner with them."


Maine Gold & Silver will continue to collect scrap metals indefinitely and if you would like to donate any items, you can drop them off at the store.  


How to Find Us

Click here for directions:

Maine Gold  &  Silver

220 Maine Mall Road

Mall Plaza

South Portland, ME 04106


Phone: 207 772-2211

Business Hours

Sunday Closed  
Monday 10:00 5:30
Tuesday 10:00 5:30
Wednesday 10:00 5:30
Thursday 10:00 7:30
Friday 10:00 5:30
Saturday 10:00 4:30

We stop buying from the public one half hour before closing. 

What's New


Stop in to see jewelry designer, Michael Hoffheimer of Sandpiper Designs.


We have moved!!

As of June 1, 2016, we are in our new location at 220 Maine Mall Road, near Dick's Sporting Goods!


Best of South Portland-Jeweler 2017



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We are  featured on The Knot.com !



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Maine Gold and Silver Charity Fund


We have raised over $60,000 for local charities!



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