Research has shown that about 70% of Americans donate to charity at least once per year, and the value of charitable donations is somewhere around $316 billion annually as of 2012. While it’s great to give monetary donations when possible, there are other ways to help out your community and the planet.
If you’ve ever cleaned out your home during spring cleaning, or if you’re overdue on organizing your closets, you might have found items you could get rid of. But don’t send them to the landfill just yet — you may be able to donate clothes, small appliances, electronics, and other things to charity instead! In order to make an impact in your community, here are some items that you can donate (and the value of charitable donations that you might give).
1. Clothing: Giving gently used clothing donations to charity is a great way to help locally and globally. Clothing and textiles are easy to recycle and reuse, so they’re perfect to give away. These items may be given directly to go toward helping families in need, or they could be turned over to thrift shops to be sold at a low cost (which is what happens to about 20% of used clothing). What can be salvaged gets recycled. That’s great news for you and the planet!
2. Household Items: It’s easy to accumulate extra items as a homeowner, so many of us wind up with extra furniture, appliances, and decor that we have no use for. If you have extra household items that you no longer need, see if there are charities who can use them. A charity may donate your furniture to a needy family, or a shelter might be able to use your small appliances. Considering that the only alternative is to just throw these items in the trash, what have you got to lose by donating?
3. Electronics: Do you have an old computer that’s collecting dust? How about a cell phone that’s recently been replaced? Have you swapped your old TV for a newer model? If you have any old electronics, charity donation pickups can accept them and give them to individuals in need.
The real value of charitable donations is that they can help others in your area and throughout the world. So many items wind up in landfills — with clothing making up 5% of that waste — that it’s best to donate when you can in an effort to recycle.
Have you donated to charity before? Tell us about how you’ve helped make an impact in the comments section. Continue reading here.