Cardboard donation box filled with clothes

4 Places to Donate the Items You No Longer Need

Spring is the perfect time for cleaning and decluttering. If you’re already in full swing, that’s great. If not, it’s time to get moving. But before you fill up a contractor-grade trash bag and send all of your discards to the landfill, we’ve got a much better idea: donate them.

It’s not just a bad idea to throw away perfectly good clothing and household items. It’s a shame, especially when so many people are in need. But fortunately for you, there are plenty of ways to transfer your unwanted belongings into the hands of people who really need them — then you can focus on creating that dream closet.

Organized walk-in closet with vanity

1. Charitable Thrift Shops

When it comes to donating clothes and household items, most people think about charitable thrift shops before anything else. It’s for good reason, too. Thrift shops usually make donating easy. Some even have local pickup so you don’t have to deliver the donations.

Portrait of a happy young couple donating clothes

The list of thrift shops is enormous. Just be careful not to donate to an organization that’s not reputable. Some of the more established charities include:

There may be others closer to your home. Check out the Thrift Shopper to find more details.

Little girl trying on new clothes and donating old ones

2. Clothing Banks and Closets

Clothing banks and closets help people in need find clothing and some household goods for free or at a very low cost. For example, the Middlesex County NJ Clothing Closet needs charitable donations that include work and school clothing, baby supplies and even furnishings. The Ocean City Ecumenical Council is another place to donate.

There are closets in and around the Philadelphia area, too. The Need Help Paying Bills website lists several options. There are closets for women (specifically for work clothing), children, and one that offers prom gowns, shoes, makeup and other necessary items to high school girls. Another accepts donations of diapers, and another needs donations of personal care items for the whole family.

Family packing clothes in boxes for donation

3. Local Houses of Worship

Synagogues, churches and other houses of worship have long been known to accept charitable donations for families in need. Some of them operate a thrift store. Others keep clothing, toiletries and household items on hand to give to needy church members and people in the community.

If there is no affiliated thrift store, it might take a few calls to find a house of worship that actively takes donations. But if you call one that doesn’t, chances are they know of another one nearby that does.

4. Friends, Family and Neighbors

Don’t forget about your friends and neighbors. Even if you live in an area where few people are in need, chances are someone is interested in some of your belongings. Has a friend admired a beautiful coat that you’ve grown tired of, or maybe a great pair of boots? Now is the time to find out!

While you’re at it, don’t forget to ask your family members. Baby clothes always seem to make the hand-me-down circuit, but don’t forget about older kids, and also Mom and Dad. Toys, small appliances and anything else that you no longer need might find a great home elsewhere.

Two important things to remember when donating: never give away junk, and always clean whatever you donate. If a shirt is hopelessly stained, any charitable organization will likely throw it out. Instead, think about up-cycling or even using tattered clothes for cleaning rags. They’re more eco-friendly than paper towels.

With all of that space you’ve created from decluttering, you’re ready for some brand new closet organizing ideas. We can help with that. Schedule a free design consultation with the Closet Works today.

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