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When Making Year-End Donations, Be Sure To Do Your Homework

By Laura Faison on Dec 08, 2016

Year-end is a great time to clean out closets for the New Year and get valuable tax deductions for 2016, but be sure to know how your donations are being used. 

As the holidays approach and the gift giving begins, Goodwill wants our generous community donors to understand the community needs and Goodwill’s non-profit mission. Goodwill is a locally focused non-profit and a leader in community workforce initiatives. Not all organizations that seek donations this time of year can state those facts. Many are not locally focused and many are not non-profits, but for profit companies borrowing a charity’s name. There are a multitude of charities that are asking for donations this time of year. If you are a committed community member, the decision to choose a worthy non-profit can be very important…and it can make a big difference.

Goodwill believes that work is the foundation for empowering individuals and creating prosperous communities. Goodwill sells your gently used goods in their retail stores to generate revenue for funding job skills training programs and career services. Unemployment is a major problem across Central and Coastal Virginia and Goodwill focuses on providing solutions to get individuals with challenges into the workplace. Anyone can use Goodwill’s job seeker services through their five Community Employment Centers or various collaborations with community partners. Goodwill works with area employers to match the right candidate with the right job with the goal of sustainable employment. Your donated shoes could contribute to your neighbor’s new job.

All donations can have value if they are handled properly. Goodwill asks you to think of four things when deciding to make a donation- material, time, or financial- this season:

1. Local donations have local impact. It can make a difference in your own community-not somewhere else in the world.

2. Donations can give someone a fresh start. The fresh start can be in cleaning out your closets AND in helping someone get a job.

3. Year-end donations provide valuable tax deductions. By doing good and donating, tax payers can get a head start on savings for the tax season.

4. Most importantly, do your homework and know how the organization will use your valuable donations. Goodwill gets the most value possible out of each donation.

“There is no easier, quicker, or more affordable way to help our community this season than by donating to Goodwill,” said Charles Layman, President and CEO of Goodwill of Central and Coastal Virginia. “Not only does donating locally help put our friends and neighbors back to work, but during this hectic time, it helps all of us get organized for the New Year. Goodwill will be fully staffed for accepting donations at all of our retail stores and attended donation centers through the end of the year, making it convenient for all donors to drop off during this busy season. Our website,, has locations and times listed. “

About Goodwill: As part of the nation’s largest non-profit community workforce organization, Goodwill of Central and Coastal Virginia serves more than 20,000 individuals annually throughout 39 cities and counties. Guided by the belief that work is the foundation for empowered individuals, stable families, and prosperous communities, Goodwill’s mission is to help people help themselves through the power of work. Goodwill sells donated goods through 34 retail stores and reinvests the revenue in programs that prepare and support individuals who face challenges to employment. It also relies on contract services and philanthropic gifts to support its mission. To learn more, visit


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2 thoughts on “When Making Year-End Donations, Be Sure To Do Your Homework

  1. Laura Faison Post author

    Rebecca – thanks for your question! Our rule of thumb for donors is if you’d give it to your neighbor or friend, it’s something you can give to Goodwill. While we don’t encourage donating worn clothing, we’ll certainly accept it (but please no soiled or dirty clothing). We do recycle clothing that cannot be sold in our stores in our continued effort to keep as much as possible out of area landfills. Thanks again for your inquiry!

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