Friday, May 20, 2011

Donations to charity

I recently took part in a yard sale. It wasn't my idea, in fact I'm sure if I asked those friends involved no one would know who originally had the idea. But I agreed to participate and unloaded enough stuff to make me glad I did. Plus it was a lot of fun to hang out with friends. We sang (poorly), danced to a singing chicken (then gave it away to a little boy who clutched it to his chest as they walked up the street. Very sweet!), and played trivia games from the pile of to-sell items.

What's the point of this? What to do after the sale. Did I really want to take all that stuff back? Setting a date for this original yard sale was hard enough, and it took all weekend. I'm not about to go through it again!

Luckily for all parties involved, 2 days before the yard sale a postcard arrived from Big Brothers/Big Sisters requesting donations. You go online, schedule a pick-up and they do the rest! All I now have to do is keep everything on my porch until tomorrow. I think I can handle that (there are tarps in case of inclement weather to keep things dry).

Good Will picks up the items, give BB/BS money based on weight, then Good Will sells the items to people in need. It's a win-win-win situation for everyone involved and it's LOCAL! I'm a big believer in helping those in need in other places, I donated to the Red Cross for Japanese relief, New Orleans, Haiti, and several other area-specific natural disaster relief funds. But to be able to help those kids in need in my own city is a great feeling.

There are other charities that do this. After signing up for BB/BS, I got a postcard from the Vietnam Veterans of America with the same set-up. But I already agreed to one, and separating/dividing them out wasn't happening. Next time!

So when you have things to give away, take a moment to do a little research and see what options there are. many charities will take things from kitchenware to clothes, electronics to books. It helps you and it helps others in need.

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