I received an interesting email from LA, who is in Virginia (not far from DC):
My office has been trying to give away “gently used” furniture. Over the last several weeks, we have been TURNED DOWN by Salvation Army, several women’s shelters, and other local charities because the furniture was USED. There’s some wear on it, but originally this stuff was $$$$. We’re not just trying to dump our trash on someone, but we are going to end up throwing it out because no one will take it.
We also had a little internal drive to get together books from home that we were going to donate to a women’s shelter, but they refused to take them because they were not NEW books. (Most of them were best-sellers that had been read once or twice max).
Goodwill turns away toys that are not NEW in original packing. This I could perhaps understand given the recall issues.
I also tried to donate some used computers, but the charity I contacted would not take them unless they had at least 3 gig RAM and over 100 gig hard drives. Heck, I’m using those! So the old ones have to go to landfills? Which contributes to yet another problem?
Is this crazy or what? This seems like such a colossal waste when everyone’s trying to pinch pennies and make do in this time and donations are decreasing. What’s up with these charities? Where did
“charity” go? Isn’t part of some of these charities to put people to work repairing and reselling these items?
In my neck of the woods, the local charities accept used goods. I’ve donated used items in good condition to most of the ones in our area with no problems. I also see used furniture at the thrift stores all of the time. Our area is pretty rural, though. I’m not sure if that could be part of the difference.
The only thing I could think of was trying Craigslist and noting that you are looking for a charity to donate used furniture to and seeing if you get any responses. I’m not sure how to verify the responses as charities, but maybe it is a way to find lesser-known charities that may be interested. I also love freecycle.org as a great way to give away stuff and receive free stuff.
I asked LA if I could publish this in case some of you had ideas of charities to try or even to vent that you are having the same difficulty with trying to donate used goods. Is this happening in more locations?