Since AP42’s inception in 2001, giving back to our community and donating our time to organizations we believe in has always been part of our core values. But what do you do when your coffers are low and you’re basically tapped out? Goodwill.

In a season when many of us are focused on gift buying or a tax deduction, December is a good time to think about another kind of giving: donating.

Even if you are tapped out financially, you can still give back by donating clothing and household items you no longer use. You don’t have to spend money to be charitable — and the things lying around your house can have more of an impact than you may realize.

#1 Top 10 items that Goodwill will take:

1) Computers – Computers and their peripherals contain electronic parts that
are hazardous to the environment if not disposed of properly.
2) Kitchenware – Don’t get rid of those pots and pans you will no longer use.
Gently used kitchenware can be donated at most Goodwill locations.
3) Video Games – Did your child just have to have the latest (and likely the
most expensive) video game this year? Make a deal: for every new video
game, donate two they don’t play anymore.
4) Books – Upgrading from paperbacks to a Kindle or iPad this year? You
know where I’m going with this….
5) CDs – You’ve got all your songs saved on hard drives and mp3 players.
Do you really need those hundreds of old CDs taking up space in the back
of your closet?
6) Cell Phones – Unused cell phones are one of the fastest growing types of
trash in America. Instead of discarding your old phone, recycle or donate
it – but remember to remove any of your personal data!
7) House items – Lamps, frames, vases, curios, baskets and collectibles.
8) Bikes – When your children have outgrown theirs, or you’ve moved on
to a new bike, consider donating the old ones.
9) Gift Cards – Billions of dollars in holiday gift cards go unused every year.
You can donate an unwanted gift card — with any unused amount on it —
to your local Goodwill.
10) Textiles – Textiles include clothes such as suits, pants, dresses and shirts.

#2  Goodwill Donation Value Guide
While we believe at AP42 that your primary motivation to donate to charity should be altruism, we also think you should know that great tax benefits exist for those who give. Here’s a quick guide from Goodwill.

Click here for the Goodwill Donation Value Guide.

#3  Which organization is worthy of a donation
If you are a discriminating giver, you will need a set of guidelines that can tell you if your donation will mostly be spent on a charity’s mission and not peripheral activities. These days you have to use your head far more than your heart to see that your charitable dollars are well spent on causes you care about. Here’s a site that will help you choose the right organization for you:

When it comes to charitable giving, we are often ruled by our hearts and not our heads. T’is the season for giving and happy holidays from AP42.