Donations in the DMV
One of the best ways to overcome excuses when purging items from your home is to know that the item is going elsewhere to good use. Here are a few of my favorite DC based charities. Always be sure to check their hours and wish lists to ensure your items can be dropped off. Some of the groups offer pick ups - but schedule far in advance. If you can't drop things off yourself, I recommend hiring a delivery TaskRabbit to haul it for you.
Green Door: Petworth-based group that provides training and services to those with mental illness in the District. They put out a monthly wish list of their client needs which usually includes gently used clothing and household items. They have also been known to accept crafting supplies to use in their center. Be sure to contact them before dropping anything off.
A Wider Circle: Wonderful charity in Silver Spring that donates all manner of household and personal goods directly to families in need. They take furniture, kitchenware, non-perishable food, cleaning products.... many things! They also take men's and women's professional wear.
Suited for Change: Great group that donates professional gear to women entering the professional workforce. Some of the clothes are sold to raise funds - it makes a great sale opportunity worth checking out! Based in NW. Dress for Success is a similar group in Silver Spring. MenzFit and StriveDC both accept just apparel for men.
Washington Humane Society: Accepts clean but used sheets, towels, blankets which they use for bedding for the rescued animals. They also accept any sort of animal related product. Locations in District on Georgia Ave NW and New York Ave NE and L Street SE.
Note: Many rescue groups and vets will also take used linens (like City Paws on 14th Street NW), so try calling a vet near you for a super easy drop off.
DC JCC (Behrend Builders): This group helps the elderly and low income families fix up their homes. They accept all manner of construction items, like paint and tools. Call the center to see what they need. They can often pick up your donation within the Beltway.
DC Books to Prisoners: This group collects books to go to prisons. They have some special request books - things that will help prisoners learn trade skills - so be sure to check their websites for specifics. Drop off is at United Methodist Church on 16th street several times per month.
Note: DC Public Libraries will accept books - but not text books and certain other kinds. Stop by your local branch to see what they need.
Thrive DC works with homeless and in need constituents in NW DC. It has offices in Columbia Heights. The link will take you to their wish list, but in particular they need travel and sample size deodorant, bars of soap, toothpaste, tampons, combs, etc.
A post to follow on quirky donation resources (think wedding dresses and fur) as well as more on ecofriendly recycling options and consignment!