Austin’s Goodwills and other thrift stores have an abundance of all of the following, and I’m sure it’s also true of most other resale markets in cities across the country. Let’s put it this way – either you can keep items out of the trash while saving money and supporting local charities, or you can reward companies for mass producing more stuff that will eventually end up in the garbage or at Goodwill (and quite possibly exploiting and/or poisoning their overseas labor to make it).
You don’t even have to settle for “used” merchandise in many Goodwills around here. They also have lots of new goods that were donated for sale.
- Gift wrap
- Gift bags
- Holiday lights
- Holiday cards
- Holiday decorations, such as ornaments and figurines
- Unopened gift sets of soap, perfume, etc. to give as gifts
- Baby clothes with the tags still on (or not, but in mint condition)
- Cleaning supplies in case you’re hosting the family get-together
And by the way, please don’t think of shopping at thrift stores as taking something away from low-income folks. Thrift stores that raise money for charities are set up to raise money for charities, not to provide shopping opportunities for low-income people. Even if they were, I assure you that there’s more than enough merchandise to go around.
So this holiday season, while retailers are urging you to accumulate more and more new stuff, head to your local thrift store at least once before you reflexively head to Wal-Mart, Target, Ross, TJ Maxx, etc.
Your community, the environment, and society will thank you for it!