Giving Tips: What Not To Give

You are sifting through your closet looking for items to donate to the blind.  You find the following: a pair of shoes with a broken buckle, a silk blouse with a stain on it, a sweater with a tiny tear under the armpit and a clean pair of black pants you haven’t worn for a while.  Guess which item the charity will accept?  They will only take the pants.  Just because you are donating to the blind, don’t assume they want things that have too much wear and tear.  Think about what not to give.

holey socks

Think before you donate: Don’t give ripped, broken, or stained clothing.
Image: Shutterstock

Volunteers (thank you!) who can see are going to sort through these items.  Guess what happens to the unusable things?  They go right into the garbage.  All these charity organizations really do want your stuff.  They just want good stuff.  Nobody wants to wear torn, broken or stained clothing.  These organizations do not have the resources to fix all the broken buckles or dry clean your shirt.  Those items should just get tossed.  Better yet, use them as cleaning rags for your house.

They know that you are not a greedy person just trying to get a tax write-off by donating your junk.   If you really want to help, consider this:  Whoever ends up getting your old clothes still has dignity.  They want to look good, too.  Some of them need a boost of confidence that getting some new clothes gives.  If they’re getting your grungy, old pilled-up sweater and mint-green warm-ups, they will feel terrible.  Do the right thing and give only what you think someone else might actually consider wearing in the light of day.  Yes, that means out of the house.

If you give decent items, everyone wins.  Think of the things you haven’t worn for a while but that are still in good shape.  Someone else could actually like it.  It’s still clean, intact and from this century—although nice vintage items are hot right now.  You will feel good for giving to a good cause.  The person on the other end might wear your blazer to a job interview.  Maybe they become the next Melinda Gates.  Who knows?


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