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Tidying Up? These Local Orgs Could Use Your Donations

A rack of shoes for sale at a Goodwill store in Indianapolis. (Steve Burns, WFIU/WTIU News)

Thrift stores across the country are overwhelmed as people donate items after watching the hit Netflix show Tidying Up with Marie Kondo.

The show encourages people to look at any item they own and get rid of it if it doesn’t spark joy. 

And a lot of Hoosiers are doing just that. 

"We’re seeing a lot on social media that’s attributable to the buzz around the tidying up show, so I think you can make some association," says Cindy Graham, vice president of marketing at Goodwill of Southern and Central Indiana. 

Graham says Goodwill usually sees a spike in donations this time of year because of New Year’s resolutions, so it’s hard to say just how much of the increase is a result of the Tidying Up phenomenon.  

But if you’re embracing the trend and find yourself with stacks of joyless items, Graham hopes you’ll consider donating them instead of throwing them away.

Even damaged items can bring in revenue for the charity thrift store.

"So when you donate that bag of clothes or that box of books you can be assured that first of all we’re going to take really good care of it, and secondly we’re going to put that revenue to a really good cause," Graham says. 

And if you’re looking for more stuff, now’s the perfect time to hunt through thrift stores. With more donations, there’s a lot more to choose from.

"You can keep pushing things outside your door, but when you’re looking to put that special item that does give you joy inside your door, check out the Goodwill store and see if you can’t find something that might be a good replacement to put into your home," Graham says. 

Other local groups that could use your donations:

Other charity thrift shops in the area include Opportunity House, Salvation Army, and Bloomington Thrift Shop. Women's clothing and accessories can go to My Sister's Closet

The Friends of the Library Bookstore accepts gently used books, recorded books on cassette tape or CD, movies, music and current magazines. The money generated from the bookstore goes to the Monroe County Public Library. Check out their website to see what items they don't want, like text books that are more than 20 years old. 

Pages to Prisoners will also take your books and send them to prison inmates across the U.S. Paperback books are preferred and mystery, thriller, sci-fi, and western books are among the most popular. They don't need romance novels, kids books, gravel guides, or a few others, so check the list before you donate. 

The Indiana Recovery Alliance could use your gently used coats, blankets or sleeping bags, and adult clothing, especially pants, long-sleeved shirts and hats. The nonprofit organization also accepts new donations of things like band-aids, toiletries, etc. 

Middle Way House could use a long list of items ranging from children's books and toys to household goods like furniture. Clothing donations for women and children should be clean and seasonably appropriate. 

Shalom Community Center's wish list includes adult clothing (especially sweatshirts, jackets, jeans, and belts) and plastic grocery bags. The list also includes things like travel-size toiletries and nonperishable foods. 

The dogs and cats at the Animal Shelter would appreciate your dog houses, plastic crates, towels, blankets, sheets and rugs. Check out other items the shelter is always in need of!

Got any school supplies you don't need anymore? Teachers Warehouse will get them into local classrooms. Most-needed items include folders, binder clips, crayons, and glue sticks. A few teachers have requested larger items like book shelves, file cabinets, fish tanks, globes, etc. 

Looking for something else? Check out this comprehensive list compiled by the City of Bloomington Volunteer Network! 

Community Wish List by Indiana Public Media News on Scribd

 

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