Doing a post-Christmas/pre-CNY clear out? Here’s our guide to places that will accept clothing or toy donation in Singapore, plus a new way to reduce food waste!
Every spring cleaning throws up the usual suspects: clothes that don’t fit, unwanted gifts, the faded t-shirts which are nearly as thin as gauze (but so comfy!), and the toys – SO MANY TOYS! Yes, it is time to let all these go. But if you’re planning to just trash them down the chute – stop right there! Singapore’s trash ends up at the incinerator, and the resulting ash fills up our one and only landfill. It would be so much better to find a second home for all your unwanted things. Which is why the planet-loving team of Secondsguru has created this fabulously useful list of the best places to give away clothes, textiles, toys and kids accessories for donation in Singapore.
The first and best step – environmentally – would be to find a new home within Singapore for your used items. Start by asking your friends, family, your helper and even staff at your condo. But if you find no takers, here’s where you can go to #PassItForward:
Action for Singapore Dogs Festive Fiesta
Donations are currently being gratefully accepted for the ASD Festive Fiesta which is taking place at the RedDot BrewHouse on the weekend of 30 Nov – 1 Dec 2019! If you have pre-loved items that are still in good condition that you wish to donate, you can drop them an email at [email protected] Please ensure that clothes are laundered and appliances are in working order.
OLIO connects neighbours and local businesses so that unwanted food can be donated, rather than wasted. Simply post what you don’t need and someone will contact you to arrange collection — ideal for condo and HDB living where we’re surrounded by neighbours! It can also be used for non-food household items.
This young enterprise is on a mission to improve Singapore’s abysmal 7% textile recycling rate. Their plan to get your cooperation? Making it super easy for you as you simply schedule a collection on their website instead of arranging drop off. They collect not just clothes but also other home textiles like bed linens as well as shoes and accessories that are clean and wearable. Green Square’s facility sorts clothes so that the good quality piles are exported for resale, and the rest are recycled into industrial cleaning cloth. NB: Green Square currently does NOT accept toy donations.
If you’re giving away good condition clothes and accessories, and are planning to refill the empty space left behind in the wardrobe – why not try swapping? Local start-up Swapaholic organises swap events regularly in Singapore for men, women and even kidswear. To participate, you will need to drop off the clothes/accessories at their centres in advance (typically in the CBD), and pay a small admin fee. Your contribution will be vetted for wear-and-tear, and likewise, you get to choose from good condition items at the swap event. Read up on how to be a part of it and other clothes swaps here!
Pass It On
This platform distributes unwanted items to low-income and needy families in Singapore. You can check the wishlist here to find out if anything you wish to pass on has been requested – items can be anything from toddler shoes to white goods.
This Singapore start-up is one of the most active used-goods marketplaces in the city. Available on app as well as desktop, it is an easy and efficient way to find buyers. Just price at $0 if you want to give away items for free.
H&M’s recycling programme is another hassle-free way of giving up old clothes and home decor textiles. All H&M stores have collection boxes near the payment counter and each bag you drop off earns you a 15% discount voucher. Clothes are sorted depending on whether they can be re-worn (and hence re-sold), reused (converted into cleaning cloth etc.) or recycled (converted back to fibre and used for insulation). If you are unable to rehome your fabrics, this is the perfect spot for them.
Social Media Forums
You can find takers for your preloved goodies on active Facebook groups. For baby things, targeted forums such as Preloved Baby Goods and East Coast Preloved Sales work well. Toys, books, breast pumps and all sorts of baby goods change hands fast in these networks. To give away for free, post on Blessing Items for Low Income Families, iamfreecycle and Freecycle.SG, or download the FreeGood app.
Ten Feet Tall
If your child has outgrown their black school shoes, head to Ten Feet Tall to buy new ones and leave the old pair behind. The donated pairs will be channelled to school-going kids from low income families in Cambodia, Vietnam, Bali and India. The Ten Feet Tall store at Holland Village collects throughout the year, and the team runs collection drives at school events now and then. Now that they have partnered with US not-for-profit Soles4Souls, they can accept ANY shoe in good condition.
SPCA and other animal shelters
Most animal shelters welcome clean towels as these provide a versatile use for their residents — from playthings to cage lining and clean up. In addition to towels, SPCA accepts newspapers, medication and dog/cat food — sometimes even domestic items like washing machines! You can keep an eye on their collection drives via their Facebook and Instagram pages. SOSD‘s collection box (open all hours, every day) is the Yellow Donation hut, right outside their shelter at 22 Pasir Ris Farmway 2, Swift Singapore, Blk C, #01-13/14. Likewise, Causes For Animals are happy to accept donations at their centres; just get in touch first to make sure they have the storage space.
Metta Welfare Association
You can drop good condition clothes and accessories here for donation, but you can also drop off e-waste for recycling too! Metta work with e-waste recycling firm Tes-Amm to safely dispose of used electronics and IT equipment. Tes-Amm will make a donation in-kind (ie. dried food supplies) of corresponding value to Metta for each item received, so the more you can recycle the better!
Metta Building, 32 Simei Street 1, Singapore 529950
MINDS (Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore) accepts most used items that are in usable, good condition (as they will be re-sold) – such as clothes, bags, books, small furniture, household items, toys and more. For more info, contact Ms Linda Yusop ([email protected]) or call (+65) 8180 2095.
They accept most used items for donation in Singapore and have drop-off locations island-wide here. But be aware they get more than they can use, so a vast number of items are ultimately shipped out of Singapore. Sometimes they aren’t accepting donations, so check first!
Finally, keep a lookout on Secondsguru’s calendar to stay updated on ad-hoc collection drives where you can drop off a donation in Singapore. If you’re looking for more tips on where to drop items such as books and furniture, check out Secondsguru’s detailed Guide to Giving!
These Organisation Are NOT Currently Accepting Items For Donation in Singapore (but have in the past)
Image Mission runs Dress For Success in Singapore, a social programme that helps women from low-income and distressed backgrounds secure jobs via coaching for interviews, and providing office-appropriate wardrobes. In case you have work-appropriate clothes (they are often short on plus-sizes), neutral color bags or low-heeled office shoes to give away, just contact them. Drop off by appointment only; call (+65) 6747 6510 or email [email protected]
*NOT ACCEPTING ANY IN-KIND DONATION IN SINGAPORE CURRENTLY
Project Uplift and Wacoal
If you have bras in usable, good condition, hand them to Project Uplift; who will mail them to communities of women who cannot afford it. If they are worn out, Wacoal’s recycling drive is a better option, as they will be incinerated to generate power. Keep an eye out for their next recycling drive on their Facebook page.
*NOT ACCEPTING ANY IN-KIND DONATION IN SINGAPORE CURRENTLY
Of course the best way to avoid clutter is not to accumulate it in the first place. Buy less, re-use more, and buy experiences rather than ‘things’. Buy only what you need, from brands who are doing their best to help the planet.
Lead image via Getty