Whanganui Midweek - - NEWS -

Be­fore you leave a box of stuff you don’t want out­side a char­ity shop, ask your­self: Would I give this to a friend? If you think you might be em­bar­rassed even to ask, it could well be a good can­di­date for land­fill.

If we didn’t have ac­tive and ded­i­cated peo­ple run­ning char­ity shops a lot more peo­ple would have to take their un­wanted goods to the dump. We were told re­cently that the com­bined ac­tiv­i­ties of the char­ity shops of Whanganui di­vert 66 thou­sand tonnes of goods per year from go­ing to land­fill back into pro­duc­tive use. That’s 66 mil­lion ki­los, and if we make the, pos­si­bly quite er­ro­neous, as­sump­tion that the lighter cloth­ing bal­ances the heav­ier china, books, and tools we could work out that that is about 150 Splash Cen­tre pools full of stuff! Ev­ery year!

Char­ity shops have a very spe­cific aim, to raise funds for their re­spec­tive char­i­ties. But huge amounts of money, time and energy go into sort­ing and dis­pos­ing of peo­ple’s rub­bish. What has hap­pened is that peo­ple can no longer af­ford to take their rub­bish to the dump or the waste trans­fer sta­tion. In many places, like some parts of Auck­land, they have spe­cial large rub­bish col­lec­tion days when old fur­ni­ture, white ware, builders’ waste, mat­tresses and Para pools can be left by the side of the street and will get col­lected. Some of it will get col­lected a bit ear­lier, we know peo­ple who scored a pair of an­tique Dan­ish chairs. But all of it will go and the cost is borne by all tax­pay­ers. You know, if we could get some­thing like that go­ing here the char­i­ties would have a lot more money left for do­ing good in the hood!

■ Ella Grant man­ages the Cheep Shop, a char­ity shop to sup­port Bird Res­cue.

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