If you’re looking for a way to give back, perhaps one of the easiest ways is to make charitable clothing donations. If you have kids, this can be made even easier for you — your kids are probably growing at a rapid rate, which leaves piles of clothing that are in perfectly good condition but that your child is now too big for. Instead of letting it pile up in your basement, attic, or garage, why not making a clothing donation to a charity in need? Almost every charity will take clothes, like veterans charities, homeless shelters, and children’s organizations. Not only are you cutting down on your clutter at home, you could be making a tremendous difference in someone’s life.
How Many People Are Making Charitable Clothing Donations? Are The Donations Used? In 2011, around 2 million tons of clothing and other textiles were either recycled in some fashion or part of a charitable donation. In 2007, almost $6 billion in clothing donations poured into charities. The rate at which donated clothing is actually used is pretty good — in 2011, it was recorded at a little over 15%. Besides which, your average American will buy at least ten pounds of secondhand clothes annually — and with thrift stores being popularized in pop culture, that number is sure to have grown in the last few years. Additionally, around 80% of clothing that gets donated is really used by charitable organizations — either to clothes those who need it, or in sales to help fund their organizations.
How Does My Clothing Donation Help? As with all donations, even the smallest amount can make a difference. Your donation could give someone a warm winter coat or put shoes on the feet of a child who needs them. They could be part of a first day of school outfit or what someone wears to a job interview, to try and turn their luck around. You’re impacting people’s lives by simply giving away what you don’t need. Donating and being generous also has proven to have good emotional effects on people as well.
Beyond that, you’re also helping the environment. Much of what gets thrown out can be recycled — especially with clothing and textiles. Those types of things can almost always be repurposed or given a second life. Instead, it tends to go in the landfill and take up space. Research has proven that around 12 million tons of clothing (and other textiles) are thrown out annually — far more than is being saved. Even worse, 90% of that could have been reused in some way.
Where Are Places I Can Make a Donation? Many large organizations have websites where you can find a drop off site for your charitable clothing donations. Some churches or religious institutions may run a clothing drive or you may already be aware of some local charities in your neighborhood that take donations. No matter where you choose to donate, know that you’re making a difference in someone’s life and helping save the environment at the same time!
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