Written by Denise Deby.
If you’re clearing out stuff you don’t need, and think someone else could use it, consider these options:
Agencies in Ottawa are co-ordinating to collect clothes and household items in good shape for refugees and residents in need. Councillor Rick Chiarelli has posted a handy map here of drop-off locations and links for Ottawa Neighbourhood Services, the Salvation Army, St. Vincent de Paul and other organizations.
Helping With Furniture collects used furniture and household goods from certain parts of the city for delivery to refugee families. See details here.
Matthew House operates a Furniture Bank for people in need.
Organizations such as the Ottawa Mission and Cornerstone that provide shelter and services to people sometimes accept clothing and personal items, but check first to see what they need.
Dress for Success and Suits His Style provide professional work clothing to women and men who are economically disadvantaged.
Clothing and other donations to the Youville Centre go to young mothers and their children.
The Snowsuit Fund makes winter jackets, mitts and other outerwear available to kids who need them.
Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore accepts furniture and e-waste.
St. Mark School is hosting an Electronic Waste Collection Depot this weekend. Find them on Sunday, Jan. 10, 2016 from 12-4 p.m. at 1040 Dozois Road in Manotick. (They’re also collecting gently used clothing.)
Alternatively, take your e-waste to EnviroCentre or another official centre or event near you.
You can consult the City of Ottawa’s Take It Back program to find out where to recycle or discard used clothes, household goods, electronics, hazardous materials and other things, or use their “Waste Explorer” to search for where to take a specific item.
There are lots of donation boxes around the city, but if you use them make sure they belong to a legitimate charity.
Remember to recycle only things in good condition that someone else will want—don’t use these services as a way to get rid of junk.
Recycling used items is good, but it’s also good to donate cash (or volunteer) for causes you care about, and/or groups helping people stay out of poverty and conflict in the first place.