It was the Halloween visit to the small town in the middle of Nebraska that really had an impact on your two daughters. They had always half heartedly thrown some clothes in a box to send home with their grandparents when they visited. Your girls knew that grandma and grandpa had a family that they gave the clothes to. A family that did not have as much. On that Halloween, however, your girls had a chance to meet the girls and see a little bit more about their circumstances. As the two trick-or-treaters, just a few years younger than your daughters, came to the door, your girls couldn’t help but notice that these costumes were nothing like the elaborate events they used to wear. The fact that grandma and grandpa gave out mittens, gloves and socks, in addition to candy, was an indicator of the need in this small community.
In our world of plenty, it is often easy to forget that many people who live in this country are less fortunate. As we race from store to store looking for the newest trends, not even paying attention to the price tags, we often become blind to how our unused items can benefit others. The fact of the matter is though that anyone who takes the time to donate clothes can serve the needs of many in our society.
Used clothing donations not only provide others with much needed items, they also fund and propel an entire industry. Charitable donations of clothing and linens, for example, in the year 2006, kept 2.5 billion pounds of fabric out of landfills. When you make the decision to donate clothes rather than carelessly throw them away, you keep yourself from being part of the Americans who send 10.5 million tons of clothing to landfills every year. In fact, almost 100% of household textiles and clothing can be recycled, regardless of quality or condition. Sometimes the decision to donate clothes takes a little bit of your time, but it helps the future of individuals in need, as well as the future of our planet.
The opportunity to see the needs of others is everywhere, not just when you are answering the door to two young trick-or-treaters. If we are observant and listen to the needs of our communities, we can find many ways to donate the items that we do not use to those in need.