Americans are generous. In 2014, people gave over $358 billion to non-profit organizations around the country. People often assume that most giving takes place over the holidays but it just not true. Only 43% of people who answered a survey about giving say they donate more during the holiday season. More people than that say they give throughout the year. More than 44% of people who participated in the survey give at all times of the year. It has never been easier to donate money and items. You can donate money online and if you want to give items to charity, there are groups that can help you make donations that pick up at home.
- You do the environment a solid when you donate your used items. Every year, Americans send more than 10.5 million tons of clothing to landfills. By contrast, we only donate about 15% of our used clothing to charity. Experts have said that household textiles can be recycled. Nearly 100% of the household textiles that are thrown away could be recycled and it does not matter what shape they are in. One of the biggest contributors to global warming and the addition of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere is waste in landfills. When we send our used clothing to landfills, they can help no one and they contribute to global warming. Donating these items to charities means they can do directly for helping families in need. It can be very convenient to work with charities that set up donations that pick up at home to make this easier for you.
- They help you get a cleaner closet. Organizing experts recommend going through your closet at least twice a year if you live in a region with real seasons. They say if you have seasons but have not worn an item for six months or more, you should really consider using it to make donations of clothing. If you have children and they have grown out of some of their clothing, they can be used by other children in need. Those winter coats that they do not need anymore can be used by someone else. Just because it does not fit you or if you just do not like it anymore does not mean there is not someone out there who will appreciate that coat, jacket or other clothes. If you get rid of your “fat clothes” you are also less likely to gain the weight back.
- Your used clothing donations can be used several ways. When there is a natural disaster, often people are left with nothing but the clothes on their back. While monetary donations are always needed, in these instances, charitable clothing donations are really helpful in getting people what they need right away. The other way these donations help charities is when they sell your clothing in their consignment shops. These sales go towards the overhead associated with running a charity This pays for some of the services they provide such as setting up donations that pick up at home.
- You can get a tax write off. No matter what you donate, assuming it is a legal product, the Internal Revenue Service allows you to take it off of your taxes. Remember to keep good records. Any donations that you make that are worth more than $250 will need a receipt. An average overcoat can be worth about $60. You can expect to be credited about $15 for an old coffee pot (if it still works).
- Giving back is good for you. People who donate their time or their items to charity are healthier. Some people call it the “helper’s high” but people who give back are healthier and they tend to get back. They may not get something directly from the person or organization to whom they donated but when we give something of ourselves, we get something back in return. Some people call this karma. You help yourself when you help others.
When you want to make used clothing donations, you have options. Working with the non-profit you can set up donations that pick up at home, meaning they come to you for your items. You do not even need to leave home to help others!