When you donate money or pre-loved goods to charity, do you ever wonder if the aid is getting to where it really needs to go? Any giving is great but would you prefer to see your nearly-new donations in a bargain bin, or in the hands of a mother and a child who might be facing homelessness.
Sydney Mums Group understands this desire to help fellow mums, so we have put together a starter list for organisations who accept donations and pass them on, as directly as possible, to those in need.
And do note that we've listed phone numbers for the organisations, as it's best to call first and double check what, where and when to donate. Dealing with an excess of donations they are unable to re-distribute, can be a problem for charities too.
Image c/o- The Exodus Foundation Facebook page
Exodus Foundation: provides FREE meals and a suite of health & outreach services to Sydney’s poor and homeless that have an immediate, tangible and positive impact.
QMHR Ark Mission: assists families and individuals whom are in financial burden and are struggling to make ends meet. If you wish to help make a difference you can do so by donating food to go towards the Mission's families in need. Ark provides fresh fruit and vegetables, fresh bread, eggs, milk and assorted grocery items on a weekly basis.
FoodBank NSW: is a not-for-profit organisation which collects surplus, salvaged and donated food, and grocery products, from food manufacturers, distributors and retailers and distributes it via charitable welfare agencies, to people in need. Do you have a food-related business and wish to donate to avoid wastage?
GIVIT: is a national not-for-profit, connecting those who have with those who need, in a private and safe way. The GIVIT website is free to use and makes giving easy by allowing you to see exactly what is required by vulnerable families in need. Just refine your search to the area in which you are looking to give, and you will see posts from any matching families in need.
Address: No set drop off location - you can look for required giving opportunities in the area of your choice, or post items
Image c/o- GIVIT Goods For Good Causes Facebook page
And here is where we stuck to get a little stuck. I could list the names of all the great charity stores in Sydney who accept donations, but you won't necessarily know whether your items are given directly to families in need or sold in the stores. They may also be discarded due to spoilage in clothing, or an over-abundance of particular items. Also, you will find that a lot of charity stores place strict guidelines around what types of donations they will and won't take, especially with toys and furniture, so you may not find a willing home for your pre-loved item.
Any organisations listed in this article, express that they are open to direct donations of goods that will be re-directed to those in need, rather than sold to raise funds for charitable services.
When I researched how to donate direct to women's and children's shelters, I started hitting the brick walls of general advice. There is also the salient point that you are unlikely to find these types of protective shelters openly advertising their addresses, or calling out for direct donations to be dropped off.
So, the best advice I can offer, if you wish to support families in need in your local community, is to:
Contact your local police station and ask if they can direct you to charitable organisations and shelters in the area that would welcome donations.
Visit your local Goodwill to find out their donation policies (including what they will accept) and whether they will donate your goods direct to shelters or other groups in the area that could benefit from blankets and clothing.
Contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 to ask if they can assist you with organisations that will accept direct donations for families.
Contact any churches or religious organisations in the area, as they may work with disadvantaged families. Enquire about charities or shelters looking for clothing or blanket donations.
Has this article been helpful? In a city as big as Sydney, giving often comes down to local knowledge and word of mouth. If you have any suggestions on where and how to donate, and you'd like to share them with the Sydney Mums Group community, please feel free to leave a note in the comments section.