Happy Earth Day – Here Are 4 Places Where You Can Donate Your Clothes
“There are no rules in fashion but one – recycle.”
The fashion industry is currently one of the biggest pollutants, and this Earth Day, we’re taking a look at five places where you can donate your used or discarded clothing. According to Planet Aid, the average American throws out approximately 82 pounds of textile waste per year, meaning that there is more than 11 million tons of waste produced every year in the United States alone. This is why it is important to be responsible and start recycling, and what better time to start than on Earth Day?
95-percent of textiles can be recycled, so make sure to do a deep closet cleaning and get rid of everything you don’t need and use. Keep reading on to see five places where you can donate your clothes.
Although Swedish retailer H&M is one of the biggest in the fast fashion industry, the organization is committed to sustainability. In 2013, the company launched its “Close the Loop” initiative, introducing garment collection at each and every store world-wide. You can donate anything, no matter brand or condition, as the retail giant distributes the pieces into three categories; rewear, reuse and recycle. Rewear is defined as “clothing that can be worn again will be sold as second hand clothes,” whereas the reusable pieces will be turned into other products, such as cleaning cloths. Last but not least, pieces that don’t fit into the first two categories will be recycled and turned into textile fibres, and used for things like insulation. Clothes can be dropped of at H&M stores, as well as at sub-brands like COS, & Other Stories and Monki.
The Salvation Army has a huge presence internationally, so chances are high that there’s a drop-off point in your city. The organization will collect everything from clothing to home appliances and toys, and will distribute them and sell at their Salvation Army stores. The profit goes directly to the organization, as well as to charities of their choice, always targeting people in need of help.
If you’re based in the U.S or Canada, you can put your things into a box and drop them off at your nearest Goodwill or any of the collection points throughout your city. All items that are donated needs to be in good condition and free from stains and such, and once you’ve donated your clothes and appliances, they will be sold online or in store at Goodwill. Once someone purchases your item, the profits will go to funding job training and other services. Goodwill is always committed to benefiting the environment. For example, the organization kept 324 million pounds of computer electronics out of the landfills since 2004.
Another U.S and Canada based operation, Value Village, who’s mission is to create a better environment. “We’re energized every day by the possibility of creating a better world through reuse. In fact, an entire division of our company is dedicated to recycling. We divert more than 700 million pounds of goods from landfills annually. That’s comparable to 3,000 Blue Whales’ worth of clothing and housewares,” states their website, also noting that all the profits go to helping local nonprofit organizations.
Of course, there are many places where you can donate clothing and goods depending on where you live, so make sure to do your research before dropping off all your things. It is important that we continue to do the most for our planet, especially with the fashion industry using so many natural resources, so this Earth Day, make sure to do at least one thing that can benefit our environment. For more sustainability, take a look at our guide on how to make better shopping choices here.