Did you know that there is more than one way to make a charitable donation? It’s true: while a monetary gift is helpful, many charities accept donations of food, clothes, and household items. While these basic items might seem like they cannot help much, the opposite is true. When your desire is helping families in need, remember that they really need more than just money. Money is the means to getting what they need.
Before you send off your old stuff, you’ll need to know what is acceptable for a donation, and where to donate these items. A quick internet search will tell you the closest charitable donations sites near you, and if they do donation pickups. Here’s some more information to get you started.
Give What You Can When You Can.
The textiles industry is a problem, however that is a topic for another day. A piece of that problem is the perception that clothing is completely disposable. It is estimated that the average person throws away about 82 pounds of textiles every year. In 1930, the average woman had about nine outfits in her closet. The average woman today has about 30 outfits. Instead of buying consciously, with restraint, and maintaining our clothing for longer periods of time, all too often we find ourselves allowing our clothing to go unworn. Instead, we buy more. Instead, we throw the “old” clothes away.
Give Your Clothes Another Life With a Charitable Donation.
Before you give your older clothes away, you’ll want to make sure they are appropriate to give. Go through your closets and the closets of your family members. Pull items that are never worn, and those that are too small or too big. You’ll want to donate only those items that are gently used. Gently used means that the clothing shows signs of wear, but the items are not ripped or stained. If you find some items that are beyond gently used, don’t fret. You can still do some good by sending these scraps to recycling.
People only donate about 15% of their old clothes. The rest goes into the already overfilled landfills, to the tune of about 10.5 million tons each year. If this seems to be a high number, you’re right. Textiles are actually one of the least recycled materials, right along with plastics and paper. This is surprising, considering that textiles are worn close to our bodies and are not used as packaging for consumables such as food. A charitable donation of clothing then, is almost an ecologically smart move.
Where Can I Donate Clothes?
A quick online search can pull up places that accept charitable donations. Some of these locations will require you to standby as they examine the clothes to ensure they are acceptable for donation. Other locations accept drop offs and will give you a receipt for tax season, while some locations are actually a drop box. Still other organizations will pick up clothing donations. You’ll need to figure out what is convenient for you.
Clothing Donations: Do They Do Any Good?
Charitable donations do make a difference. While you may have no use for an old pair of pants, or a household item that hasn’t been used in years, it can make a difference to someone else. Some people who are struggling are not able to buy new appliances, or cannot afford to outfit their rapidly growing children in new clothes for school. Your donation makes a difference to them.
By sending gently used items to the recycling center or a used clothing store, you’re keeping those items out of the landfill. We are all under so much pressure to do the right thing. Making a donation instead of just throwing things away is definitely a pain-free way to do good.
If you are unable to make a monetary donation at this time, don’t worry. Take a look around your house, and it’s fairly certain you’ll find a few items that are not being used. Dust off the appliances, or wash and fold the clothes before scheduling a pickup. You’ll feel better once the items are gone because you’ll have more room in your home, and the knowledge that you’ve helped someone else.