Posted by Michelle Smith, Communications Manager
Philanthropy and Public Affairs, Goodwill Industries of Northern New England
Many of us accumulate clothing and other household items that at some point we no longer need – what do you do with all this stuff? Goodwill Industries® has started the Donate Movement to help answer this question.
Goodwill’s mission is to enhance the dignity and quality of life of individuals, families and communities by eliminating barriers to opportunity and helping people in need reach their fullest potential through the power of work. As an altruistic movement launched in June 2010, Goodwill’s vision for the Donate Movement is to empower consumers to donate and to think twice about where they donate, ultimately realizing the difference their donation of used goods can make for their communities and the planet.
Goodwill® has been practicing “reduce, reuse, repurpose” for more than 100 years, and one goal for the Donate Movement is to create a universal symbol of donation akin to the recycling symbol. Every day, the universal symbol for recycling reminds us to recycle bottles, paper, cans and more. Now, imagine another symbol on clothing, household goods and electronics that reminds you that an item can be donated when you no longer need it. Individuals and businesses are already helping to get the word out. In fact, last year, Levi’s® partnered with Goodwill® to launch Care Tag for our Planet.
But Goodwill® also wanted to answer the question many donors have – what happens to my donations? What is their impact? How am I helping others through my donations? The sale of donations helps Goodwill® fund job training programs, employment placement services and other community-based programs for people who have disabilities, lack education or job experience, or face employment challenges. The Donate Impact Calculator was created so that consumers can directly correlate their donation with social impact. Users have calculated their impact more than 70,000 times since the Donate Movement launched. For example, if I enter that I donate three coats, I know that my donation helped an individual gain 52 minutes of on-the-job training. Imagine the impact of thousands of coats donated every day!
We encourage you to share the impact of the Donate Movement with your family, friends, and colleagues. Donate your Facebook and Twitter profiles and feature the Donate symbol. Are you a blogger? Become part of Goodwill’s Blogger Network and share why you donate. Organize a donation drive in your community. And most importantly – donate! Together, we can work to make the ‘D’ icon the universal symbol for donating and share the positive impact donations have for the planet and individuals and families in our local communities.