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Today's Family Magazine

Five reasons to donate to Goodwill

It’s that time of year again when the days get longer, and the temps get warmer.  Warmer weather always seems to inspire spring cleaning, especially for families.  This annual cleaning is the perfect time to declutter and reorganize your home.  Out with cold-weather clothing and in with tank tops and shorts.  This changing of the seasonal wardrobes is a great time to reevaluate your wardrobe and get rid of clothing items that no longer fit. 

Don’t let the fun stop.  Use this time to declutter other parts of your home, too.  Kitchen utensils and appliances, home decor, toys, old electronics — these are all fair game. 

Once the cleaning and purging is complete, most families will have a huge box or multiple bags of items that are no longer needed or wanted.  Those unwanted items can be a powerful tool to help your local community when you donate them to Goodwill.  Why donate to Goodwill?  Here are five reasons. 

1. You help make a difference.  When you donate your gently used clothing or household items to Goodwill, the revenue generated from selling those items in local stores supports local mission programs.  Locally, Goodwill operates 30 outreach programs that supported nearly 17,000 local residents last year.  Programs such as job training for individuals with disabilities or other barriers to employment, parenting classes, literacy programs, hot meal programs, family strengthening programs, emergency vouchers and even care to survivors of sexual assault.  These are all funded through donations and sales at area stores. 

2. Items get recycled instead of ending up in landfills.  Donating your unwanted items to Goodwill, instead of throwing them in the trash, means less garbage in our landfills.  Last year, more than 23 million pounds of goods were diverted from area landfills because people chose to donate items to Goodwill instead of throwing them away. 

3. It helps you get organized.  When you clean out your house, it essentially forces you to organize your spaces.  If you’re pulling out items to donate, what’s left must be put back, and that makes it easy to decide where things should go.  With every item having its own spot, it can help reduce stress levels in the long term by requiring less last-minute scrambling in a variety of everyday situations. 

4. It gives you a reason to shop.  Donating items frees up space for you to see what you actually need.  Thrift shopping is a great way for individuals and families to save money on clothing and household items.  Shopping at Goodwill stores is a treasure hunt and can produce one-of-a-kind finds for a fraction of retail prices.  And, shopping at Goodwill supports vital outreach programs. 

5. It’s convenient.  Our Goodwill offers more than 30 area donation centers.  Visit Goodwill to find a donation center near you. Even our bookstore locations accept donations. 

Local Goodwill stores have a critical need for donations at this time. 
“We have a tremendous need for donations right now,” explained Maureen Ater, vice president of marketing and development.  “Donations are critical to provide product for our stores, and ultimately fund essential services to our community.” 

Goodwill also can provide tools to help area businesses or agencies host donation drives.  Donations to Goodwill are tax deductible.  Starting last year, the local Goodwill now offers mobile donation centers, which can be reserved for up to a week for free.  This is a great service for large cleanouts with lots of boxes, furniture and/or other household goods you would like to donate.  Learn more at