Ideas for Donations/Re-purposing

I have been tasked to put together a slide for my company’s “green team” that provides ideas for where to donate/recycle things when we clean out our homes. All of this will be accompanied with appropriate precautions to take with the virus but many people are cleaning out their homes right now and it would be great to provide suggestions around how you can reuse/donate/recycle common household things.

What other ideas/suggestions do you have?

So far I have:

  • Old Blankets and Towels - animal shelters
  • Old reader glasses - hospitals (many people who come to the hospital in an ambulance do not remember to bring their glasses, this can help patients read paperwork or a magazine)
  • Business Clothing and old T shirts - There are a few local charities that focus on getting people ready for interviewing with professional clothing. Their bags that you take home everything in are made out of old T shirts sewn into a bag.
  • Canned goods with expiration date + 6 months - Local food bank
  • Old paint - https://www.paintcare.org/paintcare-states/colorado/#/everyone
  • Furniture - Donate to Habitat for Humanity ReStore
  • Camping gear - donate to local homeless shelter
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This is fantastic, especially since so many items are just bulk donated to thrift stores (Goodwill, Savers/Value Village, Salvation Army, etc.), and the vast majority of those items end up in landfill because they either aren’t acceptable items or aren’t resellable.

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This is the exact problem I would like to help people solve. Donating to goodwill, etc. is great and all but it is really not much better than throwing it into your trash.

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This is a fantastic idea!

What about specific clothing items (like coats, scarves, etc) for homeless shelters?

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A lot of donation centers are currently closed due to the Great Quarantine – people may have to wait to donate stuff. (This is going to depend on local health orders, probably, but I know that e.g. my local Goodwill ain’t exactly accepting stuff right now.)

Homeless shelters will also take clothing donations, and often bedding donations if arranged ahead of time.

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Old glasses (nonreaders) and contacts can sometimes be donated, an eye doctor locally here has a thing set up on the side of their waiting room for those. Maybe there’s something similar in your area?

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Cool list.

Would boy/Girl Scouts use old camping gear (e.g. for scouts with not much $$]?

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I think it depends on the troop! I would reach out to your local troop leaders.

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@diapasoun I realize that many places will be closed right now, and people should not be leaving their homes anyways so this is more of a “set it aside to donate it when all of the madness is over instead of throwing it in your trash can” type of message, the stuff has likely been in your home for years, what is a few more weeks?

I will look into old glasses that are not readers! Also local boy/girl scout troops is a great idea.

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Legit! There’s definitely going to be folks with piles of stuff to truck out, hahaha…

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Like @Frecks since they cleaned their garage!

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If not the scouts, the program in my city that does homeless outreach regularly asks for used camping gear (tents, sleeping bags, etc, not just coats). Not sure if there’s something simliar where you are.

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I don’t have any camping gear. But I think the scouts is pretty expensive, so I think lower income kids may not get to join as easily. Maybe they have a sliding scale?

Disclaimer: I am kind of anti-Boy Scouts based on some scandals and political positions. I think the Girl Scouts have avoided some of that.

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