Dumping is not donating
FAR from being a sign of overflowing community good will, piles of ‘donated’ goods next to charity donation bins are a burden on not-for-profit organisations.
Lifeline Mossman manager Wendy Jones said that goods being dumped outdoors in the tropics often needed to be taken to the tip and, if it rained, anything outside went into landfill.
“Where possible we ask them to put the smaller items inside the bins and not just leave them on the ground, especially in the wet season where it just gets damaged and it also gets stolen and it gets trashed,” said Ms Jones.
The bins on Mill St in Mossman, pictured last Wednesday (right) were surrounded with items, including broken furniture and clothes draped on the fence — something that wasn’t necessary.
“At the back of the Lifeline store (at 6 Front St) there’s an area they can access via a side driveway,” Ms Jones said.
“We ask them to drop items during trading hours, which is 8am to 5pm, and then we can put it away safely and it’s not left overnight. We do have a truck that comes up from Cairns once a week.
“Any large items we’re more than happy to pick up.”
Some goods left behind are obviously not intended to be donated, but simply dumped as rubbish.
“Do a tip run,” said Ms Jones. “We’ve got a very stretched budget as a not-forprofit and, for us to pay a truck and two drivers to do a tip run and pay council tip fees, it’s just more of a strain on the meagre funds that we have.
“If it’s not saleable, please put it in the rubbish. Take it to the tip, because if you don’t want to pay, neither do we.
“We will take all sorts of stuff as long as it’s in good condition and it’s saleable.”
Goods being left at bins is not only a local issue.
Ms Jones said, in some communities, bins had to be taken away due to the amount of rubbish.
“Ninety per cent of people do the right thing,” she said.
“People are very generous; we really appreciate that generosity. It’s just the (other) people that wreck it.”
If you have large items you would like to donate, phone 4098 1535 to organise a pickup time.
Under Queensland law, it is a chargeable offence to dump items outside of bins and police will get involved.
Donation bins in Mossman are often surrounded by goods that have to be thrown out.