Make a Difference When You Donate Your Clothes to a Charitable Organization

Donate goods to charity

Clothing drives are often a big charitable movement, especially before cold weather hits. Donations of boots, coats, and cold weather accessories like hats, gloves, and scarves, are often advertised, asking people to give. If you’re looking for a way to start giving back to your community — or even on a larger scale — donating clothes is a great way to start. If you’re looking to donate clothes, there are plenty of charitable organizations, both locally and internationally, who accept clothing donations on behalf of the poor or in need. When you recycle your gently used clothes, you’re also helping saving the environment, by keeping the clothes that could be re-worn from the landfill. Additionally, you earn the contented glow of knowing you’ve done some good in the world!
What Should I Keep in Mind When Looking to Donate Clothes?
First of all, you should make sure that the clothes you donate are in good condition and gently worn. If there’s something that’s missing a button or a zipper, and you can fix it, go ahead and fix it. No one wants an item of clothing that they can’t wear. Clothes should be free of stains, rips, tears, and other such wear. Before donating, make sure clothes are clean and smell fresh.
Donating to shelters or clothing drop off centers is one great way to make sure that your donations go right to the source. However, many charitable organizations also resell used clothing in secondhand stores, offering a significant discount. Donating there may also offer you the opportunity to browse through the selection at the secondhand store! Those profits may also in part, go to help fund the charitable organization’s work.
Why Should I Be Donating?
For one, it’s the right thing to do. Paying your good fortune forward is important and you may find it often comes back to you. You’re helping other people get back on their feet, stay warm and dry, and improve their life in some small way. For some, a new winter coat or pair of boots might mean the difference between life and death. Society does judge others on their appearance, so you might be helping someone look good for a badly needed job interview, or giving a child his or her back-to-school outfit.
Philanthropic work also makes people happier, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, and it can help foster a better sense of community, as people come together to help the greater good. Additionally, charitable donations are often eligible for a tax break, but make sure the charity you’re donating to has a nonprofit status according to the IRS code, and keep track of the amount (estimated or exact) you donated.
How Does My Donation Help Save the Environment?
Considering that today, the typical American purchases twice as many clothing articles as we used to 20 years ago, there’s a lot more clothing piling up in closets that we maybe wear once and then give or throw away. That’s a lot of waste! Americans buy almost 20 billion pieces of clothing every year! Naturally, we need somewhere to put it, and regrettably, almost 11 million tons of it goes into landfills annually.
However, when you donate clothes, the clothes go back into the consumer cycle and get a second life, away from the landfill. They may eventually be turned into rags, even, and broken down further before they reach the landfill. In 2006, almost 3 billion pounds of clothes were kept from the landfill, thanks to people who looked to donate clothes, instead of just getting rid of them. Given that almost 100% of household textiles and clothes that get sent to the landfill are actually recyclable, that number should be far higher. But the more people who take the initiative to donate and give back, than throw away, the higher the number of recycled textiles should be.
It’s not hard to do the right thing — and if you don’t have the capital to make a financial donation, make a simpler one, with your gently used clothing! It will still be appreciated just as much, and you can rest easier, knowing your clothes went to someone in need.

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