The weather is starting to get cooler. It’s a great time to clean out. But, what to do with all that STUFF? More and more people are finding that they can live with less and less…stuff.
Most of what we want to get rid of will not bio-degrade any time soon.
The good news is that there are heaps of options for donating, repurposing and recycling your unwanted stuff.
Clothing, Shoes, Textiles and Other Household Items
The Junior League – Not only will The Junior League take high fashion clothing, but will take ANY textiles. They are repurposed for quilts and more.
Red Apple Recycling / Little Red School House – Fund schools’ sustainability and wellness programs through clothing and shoe donations. They also will take any clean textiles which are repurposed for cleaning rags and more.
USAgain – Collects unwanted textiles and resells them in the U.S. and abroad, effectively diverting millions of pounds of clothing from landfills, generating new revenue streams for U.S. businesses and non-profits, and fueling local economies in emerging countries.
The Salvation Army – You can schedule a pick up or drop off to any of their nationwide locations.
Goodwill – Accepts most clothing and household items. There are a few things they can’t accept – such as items that have been recalled, banned or do not meet current safety standards. In addition, if you’re looking to donate specialty items such as computers, vehicles or mattresses, it’s best to give your local Goodwill agency a call first to find out any rules or restrictions around these items.
Computers, Electronics, Batteries, Paint, Papers and More
Whole Foods provides collection boxes in many stores for cell phones, ink jet cartridges, batteries, lightbulbs (CFLs), corks, toothbrushes and more . What is accepted varies by location. You can find your closest store here.
There are also mail-in programs like this one . It’s a bit pricey, but if you don’t want to drive to drop off your items, it’s an option.
Some areas have programs where items are repurposed for classroom use. Like R.A.F.T. in Denver, CO. They accept all sorts of things – like corks, bottle caps/lids, Styrofoam and much more.
Paper Shredding and Electronics Recycling through programs like Clean Sweep (Denver, CO)- Clean out your home and responsibly dispose of old documents, electronics, and paint. This is a great way to securely dispose of that computer or cell phone that no longer works. They do an FBI wipe of the hard drive and responsibly recycle the components. Papers are shredded securely. Donations are redirected to the school sponsoring the activity and the sponsors get great exposure.
Children’s Clothes, Shoes, Toys, Strollers, Cribs and More
Just Between Friends (JBF) holds bi-annual sales around the US of good, clean, reusable items at a fraction of retail. It’s like a giant garage sale with high standards for cleanliness and safety. All items are inspected prior to acceptance into the sale. And, no re-called toys are accepted. Since children spend so little time in any size of clothing or toy, it just makes sense to pass them along. Want to make a little money in the process of cleaning out? You can become a consignor here.
This is just the beginning. There is much more to come!