Shopping for Christmas … From Your Screens

The novel #coronavirus has upended life as we know it. Even the holidays haven’t been spared, with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommending that more than 330 million Americans reconsider their Thanksgiving travel plans to stop the spread.

Generally speaking, the fewer people you come into close contact with, the better. And with Christmas, Hannukah and other celebrations due up, CDC lists “Going shopping in crowded stores just before, on or after Thanksgiving” as a high-risk activity.

Since it rarely requires interpersonal interaction, online shipping is low-risk. It has been growing apace with the internet for more than 25 years, and it is now set to eclipse all other channels for holiday gift-giving during the pandemic.

Retailers are ready to provide home delivery and contactless pickup if you’re willing to offer a credit card number. The deals aren’t bad, either; many outlets are offering loss leaders just to get you through their online storefronts.

Sitting in front of a screen trying to source great gifts can be tedious — there’s just no way to browse as fast as you might in a physical setting. That’s where online gift guides can help: They can point you in the direction of good gifts for anyone on your list.

Stuck for ideas? Just Google “gifts” and few keywords of the things and activities your giftee likes, and you’ll soon have a page of links to lists suggesting products with click-throughs to online stores ready to take your money.

Whatever they like — be it tech, gaming, music, movies, pets, exercise, cooking — there’s a gift guide for it. At the Organizing Blog, we like to give gifts that don’t add to clutter, meaning they are immediately useful or take up little space. Gourmet foodstuffs, a subscription to a streaming service, or a charitable donation are good options.

To help fund valuable veterans programs during a particularly stressful and often isolating holiday season, consider donating your extra stuff to ClothingDonations.org or making a direct donation of money or a vehicle to VVA.org. The veterans appreciate the help. Now get shopping!

Building Upon the Benefits of Decluttering

The Organizing Blog has often extolled the many virtues of decluttering in streamlining your space and building your overall well-being — and offered plenty of targeted advice on many aspects of the topic.

We have also made it easy to get rid of the extra junk that we’ve helped you clear out of your closets, basements and garages by contacting ClothingDonations.org for convenient, tax-deductible pickups throughout the year.

But you may not yet be aware of what happens to your donations and the ways in which they help the nation’s veterans. Reducing clutter is reward enough, but your donations are crucial to programs that help veterans throughout the country.

When you donate to ClothingDonations.org, the Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) coordinates pickup. VVA is a national veterans service organization that’s funded mostly though fundraising activities and membership fees.

The association’s primary source of funding is the resale of items donated to ClothingDonations.org. VVA picks up your generous donations and resells them in bulk to qualified, privately owned thrift-store operators, who in turn sell the used goods to bargain-shoppers.

Money from resale goes directly to local, state and national programs designed to help VVA’s more than 75,000 members, other veterans in need and their families. They help throw chapter get-togethers, build memorials to those who gave their lives in service, send veterans’ grandchildren to college and more.

Proceeds from your donations assist veterans nationwide in accessing guaranteed government benefits, affordable housing and health care. They help veterans cope with problems such as Agent Orange exposure, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and substance abuse.

On a national level, VVA uses the funds to advocate for legislation supporting veterans such as the Blue Water Navy Act. In short, all funds garnered from donation pickups help veterans continue to be active and vital members of the communities in which they live.

So, the next time you schedule a pickup with ClothingDonations.org, you can feel doubly good. Your simple act — decluttering — will not only improve your situation, but will also improve the lives of thousands of veterans in your community and others throughout the country.

We make it easy to #ThankAVeteran and give something back!

Donations Offer Veterans Direct Support

Donations of used clothing and household goods made to ClothingDonations.org are resold to thrift and secondhand stores throughout the country, with the proceeds going toward funding veterans’ programs at a hyperlocal level. With the help of the local chapter of the Vietnam Veterans Association, for example, more than 30 homeless veterans in Northern Virginia received Veterans Administration Supportive Housing (VASH) program gift cards to assist in finding stable housing during the holidays, and still more received grants to cover sudden financial emergencies.

VVA Pickup Testimonials

  • “I cannot begin to tell you how much my wife and I enjoying donating clothing and other goods to the VVA. The VVA is always professional and responsive.”
    -Craig W.
  • “Thank you so much for helping me clear out some things. What a great organization and so prompt!” -Laurie C.
  • “I’m getting ready for my second or third donation of very nice clothing and household items. Thank you for mailing me the post cards and bags. Without paying attention to the first one – I never would have heard of you! I’m glad to have found you and will continue to provide things whenever possible.”
    -Marcia Clevenger W.
  • “My favorite organization. I donate at least $1, 000.00 worth of clothes, etc. to them at least 2 times a year!” -Rose Marie Anello C.
  • “Just wanted to say thank you for how easy you make it to donate. I previously contacted another organization that involved an email submission, phone tag, and then a one month wait for a pick-up. I got your flyer and it was as easy as clicking online. Wonderful! Thanks so much for making it easy and for the great work you do!” -Erin K.

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