How donating your gently used items can help the environment and those in need

In the age of eCommerce and fast fashion, it’s easy to get caught up in the thrill of shopping for the latest must-have item or clothes. However, excessive consumption puts an excessive burden on our environment. To offset the effects of excessive consumerism, think about how you can give back to the environment. Every environmentally conscious step you take can help make a positive impact on our community. Donating gently used clothes and goods to charity can not only help support those in need, but also has ripple effects around the planet.

Read on to find out our top 3 reasons why donating your gently used clothes, and household items can help your community and the environment!

Help those in need

Charities and NGOs play a critical role in addressing problems around the world, and donors play a big part in helping these organisations tackle some of the world’s problems. However, many businesses have built their businesses around encouraging people to consume. Passing on gently used clothes and household items gives them a second life with a new owner who will appreciate them. Not only does this minimise landfill waste, but it also helps curb the excessive demand of producing wasteful goods.

You can help people living in poverty by donating clothing and other items that you no longer need. From seasonal clothes, kid’s toys, books to more common electrical appliances such as rice cookers, electric fans, and heaters, the high quality goods you no longer use can be valuable to families in need.

Reduce your carbon footprint

When you donate goods, such as clothes, you save the environment from a lot of harm. By donating used clothing and gently used household items, you’ll be contributing to the circular economy where things are manufactured, used for as long as possible, then recycled. The longer something is in circulation, the fewer items will be produced and thrown away to landfill. This circulation of use allows items to be used to their full potential, creating a more sustainable environment and reducing harmful impacts. You’ll help conserve water and energy used in creating new garments and items, which will help offset the carbon emissions generated by the production process.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, it costs $45 on average per ton to dispose of waste in a landfill facility [1]. Clothing and other items that sit in landfill can release toxic greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and methane into the environment when they break down. These noxious gases can harm the environment and the community around the area. Producing new clothes also takes hundreds of gallons of water. The production of new textiles accounts for 10% of all carbon emissions on the plane - all of which can be avoided if you donate your clothes and gently used household items for reuse.

Save water

The fashion industry uses excessive amounts of water to produce clothes. Take cotton, for example, a popular material used in textile production – but also highly water-intensive. A cotton t-shirt takes an average of 2,700 litres of water to create [2]. When you donate gently used clothes to be reused by the next owner, it reduces garment production demand.

Secondly, clothing donation saves water by protecting it from reducing chemical pollutants in the air. When unwanted garments and textiles sit in vast landfills, they will start to release toxic gasses. When rain falls on those landfills, the water rinses out the chemicals, and together they accumulate at the base of the landfill, eventually finding their way down to the groundwater. By keeping your clothing in circulation longer, you can help someone who is in need of new clothes and help keep the environment safe.

Where can I donate my items?

GoodCity is a goods donation app operated by Crossroads Foundation, an experience charity that has facilitated the donation of goods and helping those in need since 1995. Funded by the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust since 2018, GoodCity has ensured that donated goods from all over Hong Kong have helped nearly 300 non-profit organizations, benefiting more than 150,000 people.

Once you’ve submitted picture of the items you want to donate, GoodCity’s team of experienced volunteers will review your items based on the status, demand, and quantity. We will then notify you if your items are available for donation. GoodCity also provides a variety of logistics options to transport your donated goods. You can book a commercial van immediately from within our app, or book a drop-off time at our headquarters in Tuen Muen if you have your own transport.