Use your Old Goods to Do Good
Reusing, reducing and recycling has never been this rewarding!
Reducing your consumption and donating your used goods can help you to save money, bolster your community and keep all your old junk out of the landfill.
Donating is Recycling
Fast fashion has increased the size of our wardrobes five-fold from 25 years ago. Over 85% of our discarded clothing ends up in the garbage, that’s 10.5 million tons of clothing. By donating your unwanted items to a local charity, you can help those less fortunate than yourself while keeping your skinny jeans out of the landfill.
If you’re going to pop your clothing into a donation bin, ensure that it’s for a recognizable charity. Many of the bins dotted around your neighbourhood are from for-profit companies who sell the clothing in developing countries. While this keeps your couture out of the landfill, it has negatively impacted the clothing industries and local economies in these countries.
Another option is to host a clothing swap. Invite a group of friends over to exchange gently-used items to perk up your wardrobes while saving money and reducing your impact on the environment. Community swaps also work for toys and stationary to help with your Back to School supplies.
Libraries aren’t just for Books
“You don’t need a drill, you need a hole in the wall!” This is the slogan of the Toronto Tool Library and they are so right. Homeowners have tools, garden equipment and even kitchen appliances that they only use once in a blue moon.
All these household items cost money to buy, maintain and store. What sharing libraries across the country offer is the opportunity to donate your goods for the benefit of your community. From sporting goods to canning equipment, sharing your items with neighbours means you don’t all have to buy a drill.
Not only do sharing libraries offer equipment for you to use, they also provide a range of workshops so you can learn to use tools properly. That means you save money by not buying tools, by learning to make your own household items and by fixing items in your home that need repair.
Donate your Books
Recycle your old books by passing them on to those who really appreciate them. The Children’s Book Bank in Toronto ensures your old reads go to eager young minds. Books with No Bounds sends books to Northern Canadian First Nations communities.
Check with your local library; many branches across Canada accept donations and will either place books into circulation or use them in book sales to raise funds.
Reading can play an essential part in the rehabilitation of inmates. You can donate your gently used books to facilities in your area. Refer to the Correctional Services Canada guidelines for book donations here.
Be sure to ask your charity to give you a tax credit so you can save even more.
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