Many people may think of Goodwill as a thrift store with good deals on clothing or household goods. However, Goodwill Industries is much more than a donation center. The revenue these stores generate supports training programs and job placement services.
Essentially, you’re supporting your community when you donate used items there.
But, will they come to your house and pick up the furniture?
What Is Goodwill?
Rev. Edgar Helms, a Methodist minister, founded Goodwill in 1902 in Boston. It began as a ministry of his church where he and his congregation would collect used household goods and clothing that people threw away in wealthier areas of the city.
Helms trained and hired the unemployed or poor to repair the broken items. Finally, they distributed the products to those in need.
Today, Goodwill is an international organization helping people achieve personal and professional goals. There are 156 local organizations in the United States and Canada, and it also has a presence in twelve other countries. Some people need help with transportation to work. Others need help with childcare, while others need English language education.
It wants to improve the lives of people seeking work opportunities and establish a consistent income stream.
What Is Their Purpose?
The mission of Goodwill is “to enhance people’s dignity and quality of life by strengthening their communities, eliminating their barriers to opportunity, and helping them reach their full potential through learning and the power of work.” The website explains, “In 2021, Goodwill served nearly 2 million individuals worldwide and helped more than 123,000 people train for careers.”
Some of the latest news briefs include a partnership between Goodwill Industries of New Mexico and the Albuquerque Public School System for a new unique education program. In the program, students fix old or damaged furniture from Goodwill. Goodwill Industries of Northwest Ohio, Inc. launched a new workforce development program, Good Rides, helping individuals facing transportation barriers get to and from work.
Another news brief details the 2021 William M. Usdane Award winner, Lysander Jones. This “national award celebrates an AbilityOne Program employee with a disability who has exhibited outstanding achievement and exceptional character.” Jones worked 500 consecutive shifts as the janitor in Great Lakes without missing a day and always went above and beyond his duties.
Pro Tip: Do you have an old RV you want to get rid of? Find out How to Donate Your RV to Charity.
Does Goodwill Pick Up Furniture?
Some Goodwill locations will make house calls to pick up furniture or other large items, but you must contact your local store to find out where they offer this service. It varies by location.
On the website, pull up the donation center locator under the “Donate” tab. Then search for a location near you by entering your zip code. There will be a direct phone number to call your local donation center.
Does Goodwill Take Couches?
Like other large pieces of furniture, Goodwill will take couches in good condition. However, after a specific time on the store floor, they send items that don’t sell to outlet stores.
Then they send the items from outlet stores to textile recyclers who will repurpose them into rags or insulation. This environmentally sound process has diverted approximately 2.5 billion pounds of used clothes and other items from landfills.
How Do I Find a Goodwill Near Me?
It’s easy to locate the nearest store or donation center. On the website, click the “Donate” tab and then “Find A Donation Center.” This will direct you to a locator to find available centers and contact information.
If you’d like to shop instead of donating, you can also go to the website and click the “Shop” tab. From there, click “Find A Store,” and you’ll be directed to the same locator above. Whether you donate used goods or shop at Goodwill stores, you’re supporting the mission to help people get training and find jobs for a successful career.
How Is Goodwill Rated as a Charity?
On CharityNavigator.org, Goodwill services are rated individually as local organizations.
For example, the Goodwill Industries of Omaha has a 100/100 rating, so you can give financially or donate goods, knowing your money and your stuff will support the overall mission of Goodwill Industries.
The Land of Lincoln Goodwill Industries is 93/100, the Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Michigan is 85/100, and the Goodwill Industries of the Chesapeake is 100/100. Many of the local organizations are 100/100.
CharityWatch.org is another “charity watchdog” that investigates the governance, transparency, salaries, overhead costs, etc., of charities all over the country. The national office of Goodwill Industries International in Maryland has an overall rating of “A.”
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Is It Worth Sending Your Furniture to Goodwill?
Goodwill is an excellent organization that began in the early 1900s to help struggling community members. It continues to follow that vision and mission. But it’s not only about providing cheap items for locals. Everything this company does centers around training and equipping people to find jobs and establish a stable income.
From impoverished Americans to teaching English as a second language and assisting Americans with disabilities, Goodwill seeks to improve their quality of life. And you can help by donating, giving, volunteering, and shopping.
Have you ever donated your used furniture to Goodwill? Tell us about your experience in the comments!
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