Donations don't have to be monetary. Next time you get in the spring cleaning mood, box up your used items and drop them off at a local thrift store. Most resale shops are run by unpaid volunteers and the profits go to a charitable organization. Your unwanted items might help fund dinner at a soup kitchen, tutoring for school children, or college classes for a single parent. Not sure what to give?
Skip the well-worn children's play shirts and box up clothing that still has several wears left. Holiday outfits, snow boots, winter coats, swimsuits, and prom dresses make excellent donations. These specialized pieces of clothing are often unaffordable to a family on a strict budget, making them perfect items for a thrift store.
Thrift stores love to receive basic, everyday furniture items. Donations of tables, chairs, couches, loveseats, beds frames, clean mattresses, and coffee tables help people set up a new home affordably. Make sure the furniture is sturdy and clean. Nobody wants to buy a couch with odors or a table that wobbles.
3. Household Appliances
Look around your kitchen and thin out any duplicates. If you received a new blender for your birthday, send the old one to the thrift store. When taking appliances to a thrift store, make sure they are in good working order and have all the parts, including safety features. Appliances in high demand are washing machines, clothing dryers, dishwashers, toasters, coffee makers, vacuums, televisions, and hot plates.
4. Baby Supplies
Newborns seem to grow out of clothing in a matter of weeks, while toddlers dismiss toys after a few uses. Send these essentials on so another parent can put them to good use. All baby supplies should be sanitized or in their original packaging before dropping them off at the store. If you donate a crib or car seat, check the national recalled items registry online to make sure the product is safe.
Want to learn more about charitable giving? United Way can help you learn how your non-monetary donation can benefit the community.