Sunday, September 18, 2016

When Donating Items the Choices Are Tough!

Hello Luvs,

Because we are getting closer to finding our tiny house on wheels, and it's really important that we make sure the items we take are not just filler. As a family we have been thinning out items AGAIN as part of our new roadschooling lifestyle. Packing for 1-2 weeks has shown us what items we use regularly for moderate weather (which is what we will be following). At times many items do not cross my mind. Did I REALLY need so many options? Luvs.... is the question! 
Remember to donate items that can actually be worn/sold.
If it has holes, stains, missing parts most of the time they have to throw them away.
Most likely they will not take used underwear and sometimes stuffed animals.
Make sure to call before popping by to ask what they are taking, and if they have any restrictions!

My continuing quandary about where to donate the reason for today's blog. When donating items there are (some if you are lucky) options regarding where you can take your items. There are places like Salvation Army and the Goodwill. If you've brought your items to either in the past I suggest different using a different alternative. Below is why doing some research before donating can give you more confidence in your choice. 

First up is Salvation Army which passes on the donations differently depending on what the particular item is. If you donate food it goes to a different place than clothing. They even take cars. Do they pay a wage that is livable....some would say no. Finding a business that will pay employees with less education under their belt often leaves the head spinning. Definitely look up the best places to donate in your area first. Something that falls in line with your principals (helps people with disabilities, your local school, battered women, etc.)

Now...Goodwill! Where their profits go is straight into their pocket(s). Going up the ladder you see that they are most (out of places that take donations) like franchises. A store that you go to in one city (or county) might not take credit cards while another does. It depends on what their Board (if you will) decides. They pay disabled workers an abysmal hourly wage while their CEO's make out like bandits (seven figure!). They settled a class action lawsuit by paying out over a million dollars for their misuse of people with disabilities. When your stock comes to you for free having compassion and a true sense of community should be a given. You should not be paying one individual an obscene amount of money and paying a disabled person something like .22 cents (which is what they were doing!) an hour. Oh, and one person at the top of their food chain thought they should be grateful for what they got. Just typing that makes my blood boil!

Wow! Just went on a tangent. I am going to reel it in. The reason for me writing the blog is to tell you about what Savers is doing now. Is it any better than Goodwill or the Salvation Army? I thought so, but after researching for this blog I know that they have many faults also. Happy me wanted to tout them because right now for every bag you bring in you get 5% off your purchase. There is a bin just inside the store. After depositing them you let an employee know how many bags you brought, and they give you a card that is hole punched (cute little shirt shape). Bring in one bag you get 5%....bring in two you get 10%...three 15%. I am sure you get that it goes in 5% increments up to 30% (6 bags). If you bring in more than that they will most likely give you another card. The card is good for one purchase. You do not have to make your purchase on that day. It does however have an end date. We donated on three occasions and finally made my purchase with a 25% off punched. It was soooo easy, and if you need to donate items it offered an incentive if your are a person who subscribes to only buying recycled clothing! So why have I change my mind about them? I found out that they promote that they donate to specific causes, but many times these charities do not receive a penny, and the profit/benefit goes just to them. They do not clarify that they are a for profit company, and if you ask them about which specific charity it is going to they cannot tell you. That gives a person pause. In the end I choose a place that wants to work toward the betterment of a community. Me getting a bigger discount on my purchase should not be my priority. I have to make sure that I remember that....not only for me, but for the example I model for my children.

If you have the time PLEASE find a place that donates (items or funds) to a homeless shelter, battered women's shelter, people/families trying to get back onto their feet, emergency victims, schools in need of supplies, or another community minded organization. In the long run you will be happy you did so!

*Would LOVE to have your feedback! Where do you donate in your area? Do you research the organization? Does where the money goes matter to you? Is time restriction a factor? Or, do you just want to get rid of the items?

Til next time,


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