Goodwill: “We still want your junk, and your gently used items too”

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The inside of a Goodwill store is shown in Berkeley, Calif., Tuesday, March 9, 2021. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) — Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana says it stands by its conviction that “everyone and everything has value,” and they are absolutely open to taking all donated goods—even the not-so-great ones.

Goodwill released a statement Tuesday to clear up any confusion after the company received backlash from a previous article where they asked people to stop donating items that are best described as “trash.”

“The recent articles on NPR and the AP newswires, have compelled Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana to assure our generous community: Goodwill absolutely wants your “junk.” And, on behalf of our fellow local, nonprofit leaders who, in this community fund critical programs and services by selling donated goods, they want your gently used items too.

Goodwill would like to address any confusion that may have resulted from this story. While an executive with Goodwill Industries International was quoted in the story to confirm the wonderful increase in donations being enjoyed by the 156 locally governed, independent Goodwill territories across the country, no one from any charity that sells donated goods “admonished” the public about the quality of their donations.

While you may no longer want what you donate, we most certainly do. Goodwill, and other such social enterprises, depend on donated goods to support mission services. To oversimplify, we get stuff, we sell stuff, and we change lives. At GINLA, none of your generous donations go to waste. Items not sold or not saleable in our stores and online platform are recycled or baled and sold as salvage. We do all of this in a socially responsible way, always diverting what would typically be sent to the landfill.

No matter how we sell your donations, we generate revenue to fund the reason why we do what we do – create job opportunities for people with barriers to employment. Every day your donations are converted to revenue that is critical to our mission. Your donations are transformed into real money invested into our community’s programs and services.

This leads to measurable and meaningful results for North Louisiana. Over the past three years, Goodwill has served almost 5,600 area residents just through its various job training programs. Whether it is an unemployed person who may have a disability, a neighbor recovering from substance abuse, or someone who may have served prison time for a nonviolent crime, Goodwill is proud to help them overcome their barriers to employment.

We are not alone. Collectively, the largest social enterprises that operate retail outlets in our region rely on your donated goods so they can also convert them into revenue to support their respective work in the community. Together, our impact is important — and impossible without your donations.

The scale on which Goodwill receives and sells your donated goods and puts the proceeds to work serving the nation’s communities is staggering. Goodwill Industries is comprised of more than 3,300 independently operated retail locations, nationwide.

Last year, the sale of your donated goods led to 288,000 people getting back to work. Our friends at nonprofit community resale services and GINLA rely on your donations to continue this important work.”

Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana

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