Simple recycling for poor to rich: charitable thrifts

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A SIMPLE WAY to un-stuff  yourself is to donate to charitable thrifts – such as the 37-year-old Habitat for Humanity’s ReStores. Walk into any of these delightful places and you’re in a store that builds homes. Proceeds help build homes for selected future deserving home owners by teams of volunteers – making it possible in neighborhoods around the country to end poverty one house at a time.

Nothing like a thrift

IMG_2211-1ReStores are aptly named because they restore individuals – the donors and recipients – through positive giving, low pricing,  and recycling. “There’s nothing comparable to a thrift,” says Wendy Deslaurier, manager of the Boca Raton, Florida ReStore, (right, with volunteer Rich, on a typical fun day near Halloween)and to whom giving comes naturally, via lifelong habits taught by her parents to their seven children.  “On any given day, donors show up with treasures, merchandise changes, our customers change, our home-owner recipients volunteer, our many other volunteers rotate through the week, diverse groups of customers come, gather, chat, and shop.  Our special daily discounts change.  We never know what to expect and that makes it fun.”

Staggered by low prices – and avoiding the consignment hassle

If you can simply take about 15 minutes, walk through your home collecting a few excess items, bag them, and donate them to a ReStore – and accept a tax receipt (for larger item, inquire about pick-up).  You can leave then; but you’ll want to stay and shop when you see something as good as – or better than – what you just donated! You’ll be staggered by the prices, and you’ll likely never consign again.  Consigning is a cumbersome process – price splits, checking back to see what sold, no investment except in yourself.  Charitable thrifts just give and give.

Second hand roses help everyone win-win
Seriously, must that chair you need be new? A second-hand rose with a history, comfort, and style is both fun to find and costs a fraction of a new one. Need a drill, a vinyl record, living room furniture, a vintage cocktail dress, a piece of jewelry, a bicycle, beach hat, a hammer, a coffee pot, designer handbag, wheelbarrow, or, yes, a kitchen sink? Go to a ReStore or any of a number of charitable thrift shops!

The clogged arteries of your home, closets, garages, and attics can be cleared out and here’s the result:

  • Everyone involved gives and receives value
  • Very low prices and recycling prevail
  • The tax deductions are sweet
  • Recipients reap through reaching goals and filling needs

Give while you get  

Mall and urban crowds buying retail can be inviting on a good day.  But on any day, giving while you’re getting and recycling just feels right.  Previously complicated shopping excursions suddenly become simple and purposeful.  Have fun!

Please check Habitat locations or another charitable thrift near you.


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