Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Out with the Old

Many people use the start of the New Year to clean out not only their lives, but their homes. If you are decluttering, please consider rehoming the items that are in usable condition instead of setting them on the curb.

If you like to give directly, post the item on the Green County Freecycle email list. Freecycle is a national organization that facilitates bringing together of people who have things they no longer need and people who could use the items. You send an email describing the item you are hoping to give away, where you are located (city is fine, no address necessary yet), and how people can contact you. Please be honest about condition. Freecycle is a great way to have the satisfaction of knowing that your donation is going directly to someone who will use it and appreciate it.

St. Vincent de Paul has a large center in Monroe located over at 501 1st Ave near Kutter Harley Davidson. You can drop off items between 9 am and 5 pm Monday through Friday or 10 am through 4 pm on Saturdays. If you have larger furniture items, St. Vincent de Paul will come pick them up. You can call them at 608-329-7837 or email to arrange pick up details. They will also take your excess plastic grocery bags and reuse them to package shopper's purchases.

Another place that can use plastic grocery bags is Bargain Nook. These resale stores raise money for the Hodan Center and use the funds to provide work, therapy and recreational opportunities for people with disabilities. Locations are throughout the region, and stores locally are in Darlington and New Glarus. Bring in those bags or gently used clothing for donations.

If your children are leaving the infant, toddler and preschool age behind, you might be left with clothing, toys and accessories you no longer need. The Carenet Pregnancy Center of Green County can help these items reach pregnant women or families with young children who need them. Their main clothing location is located in the Hope Community Center at 1508 11th St, and they have offices just west of the Square on 11th Ave. Call them at 325-5051 for hours and drop off details. Carenet is a Christian ministry with a focus of preventing abortion by giving support to women in a crisis pregnancy situation.

Green County Humane Society could always use donations too. They are always looking for animal related items like pet toys, collars and leashes, but many do not realize that they can also use blankets and towels too. If you have some that are getting too old to be usable for people, the Humane Society can probably put them to very good use.

Be creative in your thinking, and most anything can be given a new purpose in life. Books or DVDs could be donated to the local library. Games, video games and toys could go to any of the local churches or YMCA community rooms. Vintange clothing and hats might be useful for the Monroe Theatre Guild.

Start the New Year with a clean slate and a clean living space while knowing you are helping others too.

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