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The Sustainability of Donating your Clothes


When you are starting your spring cleaning, you might want to think about donating or selling your old clothes instead of just tossing them in the dumpster.

   Photo description: This shows WayPoint Thriftstore in Murrayville, GA which is a Christian based store using their donation proceeds to help men who are fighting addictions to drugs.

Kelly West, a biology and environmental science professor, says that donating clothes is a better strategy than throwing them in the trash. She says, “Sure, some of the clothes might still end up in a landfill, but some will end up being someone else’s find of the day, and others will be downcycled into rags or stuffing for other products or shipped to lower-income areas.” 

Sophomore Tatum Vullo, a criminal justice major, worked at Uptown Cheapskate, a higher-end thrift store, and was responsible for going through

the clothes and determining what was fit to be bought by the store for resale. 

She says, “If they are thrown away, they will sit in a landfill whereas if rebought by donation, they are worn by a new owner.” 

Plato’s Closet, another reseller, states on their website, “We’ll calculate what we can offer you based off the style, condition, and brand of your items. Once you accept the offer, you’ll be on your way with extra cash and good vibes from recycling. Your items go onto our racks instead of into landfills, helping continue the circle of sustainable fashion!”

Hannah Colston, a UNG alumna, says she believes the benefits of donating depend on the intentions of the person donating. She says, “I think it varies. I know that a lot of people are donating to dump. I really don’t think there is too much wrong with that because someone may buy it again and it will end up being recycled even if that wasn’t the donor’s purpose.”

Colston donates her clothes to the No One Alone thrift store in Dahlonega. This store gives its profits to a women’s shelter nearby. She believes that focusing on the positive, sustainable impacts your donation can make on your community and environment is very important as a donor.

West says, “If you have the option, donate more to local thrift stores than bigger corporate centers. This will help meet needs in your local community and typically supports local employment as well.”

West said that there are some amazing local thrift stores people can check out close to the Dahlonega campus such as the Community Helping Place and Southern Finds. She also recommends No Longer Bound’s thrift store, Humane Society Resale and The Place. 

Photo by Gracie Greenich


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The Sustainability of Donating your Clothes