« Continue Browsing

e-mail article Print     e-mail article E-mail

Melissa Schmalenberger, Published July 28 2013

Donating items a good way to clear clutter

Often I’ll get a call from a client and we’ll roll up our sleeves and get to work. But then we have to stop.

The reason? We come across something of value that they no longer want, but they just don’t know how to get rid of it.

We all have that voice in our head that says, “but you paid good money for it!” or maybe “that is worth something!” In these cases, I tread lightly and ask about nonprofit organizations they support or causes that are important to them. One client wanted to make sure that her husband’s jackets went to help Vietnam War veterans. For my clients who have nice dress clothes, purses or shoes I suggest Dress for Success.

My clients will struggle with things that they think they could sell. But in order to make money they need to be Internet savvy or know someone who could do it for them. We talk about the time and energy it takes in trying to sell items, from garage sales to eBay. It all takes time. Often making money is not the issue, but rather knowing someone will value what they have and take it into their home and love and care for it is the bigger issue.

My personal struggle was with an expensive basket collection. I told myself that I would only buy them if they had a purpose in my home. Well, some of the purposes have changed. Now have a basket collection that I no longer want. But I too want to make sure that they are going to a good cause. So I brainstormed good causes and remembered that I am always asked to give baskets for silent auctions. I can’t do every event that I am asked to do, but I do the ones where I have a personal connection. I have organized silent auctions before and I know the tremendous amount of work that goes into them. Often we have struggled to even find baskets in which to place the donated objects. So now I have some baskets to give and the organizers can fill them and recipients will now get a lovely basket as well.

The recipients of my baskets are going to find them in Mapleton on Aug. 10. The focus will be on a great family that we have known for over 10 years. The Hoy family is a fantastic family where the father was diagnosed with cancer in May of 2011. Rick was my middle son’s football coach for several years. He is a giver and a celebrator. So what better than a celebration for he and his family on Aug. 10 in Mapleton.

When you hear of someone being diagnosed with cancer you feel so powerless and you don’t know what to do. But donating to a celebration so that finances can stop being a concern is a huge help. I have seen the power of a celebration. It can work miracles. I am ready to see some more miracles.

What do you have in your home that you can donate and make some miracles happen for others? We are surrounded by items that are in good condition that no longer have a purpose. We are also surrounded by great organizations that can make use of your items. I wish I could list all the great organizations but I would miss some.

So ask around in your community, post the question on my MS. Simplicity Facebook page as I am always there to help. Give with purpose and see what miracles you can create.

MS. Simplicity, also known as Melissa Schmalenberger, operates her business as I Did it with MS. Simplicity. She is a Professional Organizer based out of Fargo, ND and her website can be found at www.mssimplicity.com/

Email her at melissa@mssimplicity.com.