Four Methods You Can Use to Donate Clothing to Charity


Donations for non profit organizations

Let’s face it: we all sometimes buy far more than we could possibly need. How many of us have those items we bought because we thought “Maybe I’ll use it” or “Just in case I need it”? In the end, these items often head to the landfill when instead they could have been given to someone who could have used them.

For some of us, this type of consumption extends to clothing, and when we no longer want these garments — even those we never wore — some of us throw them away. In fact, the average American throws away approximately 68 pounds of clothing and textiles per year, contributing to the 12 to 13 million tons of fabric already in our landfills. The worst part is that most of these materials could have been recycled or reused by giving them to charities.

If you find yourself in possession of an excess amount of clothing and accessories, you have the option of donating clothing to charity rather throwing these items in the trash. How can you get started, you may ask? From giving in clothing drives to calling charities that pick up clothing donations, here are four different ways to help out your local charity organizations:

1. Give to a secondhand store. Many secondhand stores, or thrift stores, are connected to local and national charities. These shops use clothing donations to help others directly. They also take donations to sell, and they use the proceeds to improve the lives of those in need. The average American purchases an estimated 10 pounds of secondhand clothing each year, so donating clothing is a great way to make sure the money goes to a good cause.

2. Donate to a shelter. If you have a shelter in your area that caters to individuals or families in need, why not give directly to them? There are shelters for all kinds of purposes, from those for homeless adults and veterans to organizations that help adults and children who are victims of domestic violence. See what your area shelters need, and if they ask for clothing, bring it over!

3. Drop it off in a drop box. You may have noticed donation boxes all over your city that tell you to donate clothing. These boxes are a great way to give back to your community and help save the planet. Be sure to note a distinction in whom you are donating to, however: some of these boxes are linked with charities that serve the poor, but others are companies that specialize in recycling clothing only.

4. Call a charity to pick up clothing donations. Many organizations these days will actually pick up clothing donations right at your home. All you have to do is call them ahead of time and let them know what you have and how much you’re donating. The charity will arrive with a truck and haul those items away for you. This is especially advantageous for families who are cleaning out their homes or who have leftover items after a garage sale.

How have you helped donate clothing to charity in your community? Tell us in the comments section!