I noticed a British friends' status update on facebook:
"Just had a 2nd email from keech the first email said from the goods I have donated £36 and the 2nd £71!! That's over £100 from stuff I would have thrown away for a good cause :)"
Intrigued to know more, I've investigated how this initiative works:
Keech Hospice Care is a care provider in the UK, specialising in palliative care for adults and children diagnosed with a life-limiting or terminal illness across Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Milton Keynes. As a way of fundraising for their charity, Keech Hospice Care operates 20 high street charity shops, selling a wide range of donated second hand clothing and goods to the general public.
If one donates unwanted goods to any Keech Hospice Care charity shop, and completes a Gift Aid Declaration, the funds raised from the sale of donated goods increase by an extra 25%.
*Gift Aid is a UK tax incentive that enables tax-effective giving by individuals to charities in the United Kingdom *wikipedia
Additionally, one of the requirements of HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) specifies that a charity which sells donated goods given by an individual that completes a Gift Aid form, must contact the donor with an update on money their goods have raised.
Surely this would be a great an incentive for others to donate unwanted clothes and household goods, knowing the amount of money their donations have raised for a worthwhile charity?
Another interesting point, legally, the charity is obliged to offer the donor the proceeds from the sale of their donated goods, a snippet taken from an email a donor receives:
"If you wish to claim back this money (less a commission of 1% plus VAT), please contact us in writing at the postal address printed below within 21 days of the date of this letter stating your Donor Reference detailed above. If we do not hear from you, we will assume you wish to donate the money raised."
I'd imagine, that most would not request sale proceeds, but this could be another incentive for more individuals to donate their unworn clothes, and unused goods.
On a separate note, as our technology moves at a rapid rate, and more people download their games, music, and movies, instead of buying discs, entertainment high street retailers are struggling to survive. The announcement that HMV recently went into administration, perhaps suggests the end of an era in the entertainment industry.
Much in the way that video and cassette tapes are almost obsolete, DVD's and CD's will surely follow suit. I am sure we can all admit to owning a large volume of discs which perhaps we've replaced with digital copies, packed away in a drawer, unwatched and not listened to anymore.
Another recent recycling initiative came to light recently; www.musicmagpie.com is a new service that gives cash for unwanted CDs, DVDs and Games.
Presently, musicMagpie only operates in USA, United Kingdom and Germany, perhaps there are similar initiatives in other countries too.
Lastly, clothing recycle initiatives are popping up in Europe, with high street retailers started to accept unwanted clothing in exchange for vouchers. More information here.
Would incentives such as the examples above, encourage you to donate or recycle?