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6 Ways to Teach Your Kids the Importance of Giving Back

As the school year finally rears its head, there’s a lot we think about teaching our children. We want them to do well in school, and even though the classroom may look different this year, their education is still important. Though you may not be as in-the-know about the curriculum as the teachers, that doesn’t mean your kids can’t learn from you as well.

For example, as a parent, you can teach your kids about important character-building traits. Consider things like empathy, compassion, and generosity—these are the sort of things that you can help your child learn. Generosity is a great place to start, as it touches on quite a few other key traits as well. To help build this trait in your children, follow these ways to teach your kids the importance of giving back.

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How To Support Your Local Veterans

Just because it’s not Veteran’s Day doesn’t mean you can’t support the veterans in your community. In fact, supporting veterans is something your family should strive to do regularly—not just because it’ll help those who sacrificed for you, but because it’ll help you get into the habit of helping those in need. When you take the time to support veterans in your community, you’ll see first-hand the power of giving back. Learn more about how to support your local veterans below!

Provide Transportation

This one is pretty simple and doesn’t ask too much of you. With COVID-19, you may not feel safe doing this quite yet, but when you do, reach out to your local (Veterans Affairs) VA organization to see if they have a volunteer transportation network. It allows volunteers to donate their time and the use of their vehicles to veterans in need.

If not that, you can reach out to the local veterans in your neighborhood and let them know that you’re available if they need anything! Even that simple gesture can make a difference.

Visit a VA Facility

When you’re able and allowed to do so, try to visit your local VA facility. Better yet, when you can, visit them regularly so that you can create a relationship with the veterans. They may not have many visitors to help brighten their days, so the time you spend with them will make an impact.

Make sure to contact the staff before you go. They’ll be able to identify the veterans that would benefit most from a visit.

Donate Time to a Veteran Organization

In a similar sense, start volunteering with a veteran organization when you can. Depending on the organization you partner with, you could do anything from clerical work to organizing events to helping veterans get through their day-to-day activities. Research local veteran organizations, and then see in what capacity they accept volunteers.

Volunteer Your Services

If you have a more specific skillset that you’d like to provide, see whether these can help local veterans. These skills can range from IT skills, tax preparation, medical training, therapy, business start-up advice, and so much more. One of the best ways to support your local veterans is by offering your skills free of charge. Most won’t have the capability or resources to pay for this type of assistance, so you could make a big difference.

Donate to Organizations That Support Veterans

One of our favorite support tactics is one that you can do year-round, no matter how busy you are. You can turn to GreenDrop. Donate clothes and home goods, and we’ll turn those into a monetary payment to the Military Order of the Purple Heart. Your quick clothing donation makes a direct impact!

Start helping local veterans now, and schedule a clothing donation pick-up in NJ. Feel confident knowing your donation makes an impact!

The Different Types of Charities


We’ve talked quite a bit about all the different ways you can lend support and live generously. We’ve talked about school donation drives, ways families that can give back, and so much more. The underlying theme in all those blogs is the idea of donating to charitable organizations—ones like GreenDrop’s charity partners (the American Red Cross, Military Order of the Purple Heart, National Federation of the Blind and Society of St Vincent de Paul), but also a variety of other organizations as well. That said, we think it’s important to take note of all the different types of charities.

When you understand all the different ways you can support your community and the world, you’ll become that much more generous and have that much larger of an impact. Look below to learn more about the different types of charities that exist in the world—and then go out and support them!

Animal Charities

Animal charities are just what they sound like—a way to support, protect, and conserve animals and wildlife. Because of how broad this charity is, it often breaks down into four distinct subcategories:

  • Wildlife Conservation Organizations
  • Hunting and Fishing Conservation Groups
  • Pet and Animal Welfare Organizations
  • Zoos and Aquariums

Now, depending on which category interests you, you should do further research to find the charities that truly match up with what you want to support. If you want to conserve savannas and the wildlife within them, then you’ll need to do your research to find charities that pursue that goal. It’s never a good idea to indiscriminately support a charity—doing your research can ensure a good selection.

Arts and Culture Charities

Whereas animal charities help protect and conserve animals and wildlife, arts and culture charities preserve artistic and cultural heritage. This can manifest in a variety of ways, from celebrating the arts to conserving the history of different art forms. Again, similar to animal charities, there are subcategories for this type of charity:

  • Public Broadcasting and Media
  • Museums and Art Galleries
  • Libraries and Historical Societies
  • Performing Arts

It may not seem like these qualify as charities, but a lot of these organizations work and survive off some sort of donation. Without support from their communities, a lot of these charities wouldn’t survive.

Community Development Charities

Think about your community. You know there are always things that could benefit from improvements or enhancements. You know there are areas and people who struggle more than others, for whatever reason, and they are a part of the community as well. To keep your community vibrant and supported, Community Development Corporations (CDCs) are 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations. They function to support and revitalize communities, especially those that are impoverished or struggling. Affordable housing projects are the most common example of these charities.

Education Charities

Education charities are again, exactly what they sound like: charities that work and serve students from every age group, pre-school to graduate school and beyond. Since this is such a broad category, some of these charities serve as educational institutions, while others focus on making education more accessible and effective for different people and communities. We’ve listed a few common subcategories below:

  • Private Elementary, Junior High, and High Schools
  • Scholarships and Financial Aid Services
  • School Reform and Experimental Education
  • Different Support for Students, Teachers, and Parents

The realm of education charities is a vast one, and there are so many avenues to support. Again, do your research to find the scenario you most want to support. Whether it be inner-city students, first-generation college students, or school supplies for impoverished areas, there’s a charity that exists for you to support.

Environmental Charities

Similar to animal charities, environmental charities focus on preservation, appreciation, and sustainable development for the environment. Where animal charities work to protect wildlife, environmental charities strive to preserve our planet in a myriad of ways. There are two primary subgroups when it comes to this type of charity.

  • Environmental Conservation and Protection
  • Parks and Nature Centers

Here again, we can see that there is so much underneath these categories—so much that helps establish these charities—from small organizations that work to plant more trees, to charities that seek to preserve the natural beauty around the world. There is always some type of environmental charity you can support that hardly takes any effort on your part.

Health Charities

Probably one of the most common types of charities you know of is health charities. There’s such a wide variety of organizations that fall under this category that you may not even realize that some of your favorite organizations are health charities or support other health charities (like the way GreenDrop supports the American Red Cross). Here are a few of the common subgroups:

  • Disease and Disorder Charities
  • Medical Research Charities
  • Patient and Family Support Charities
  • Medical Services and Treatment

As you can see, health charities cover everything from supporting and treating people who are sick and disabled, working on cures for diseases, and even promote public awareness.

Human Services

Human services is another broad charity category. It takes a lot of different life experiences into consideration and ends up being the “fallback” category for a lot of organizations because it is so general and all-encompassing. Typically, you’ll find the following groups underneath the human services charity category:

  • Children’s and Family Services
  • Food Banks, Food Pantries, and Food Distribution
  • Homeless Services
  • Multipurpose Human Service Organizations
  • Social Services
  • Youth Development, Shelter, and Crisis Services

Keep in mind that this is not an all-encompassing list of the different human services subgroups. Depending on the charity you decide to support, they could target way more than what’s listed above.

International NGOs

Now comes one of the top-guns in the charity world—International Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). These are typically charities that have headquarters in one country but do a lot of work in numerous other locations and countries. Often, these organizations will overlap with other types of charities we listed above:

  • International Development NGOs
  • Disaster Relief and Humanitarian NGOs
  • Conservation NGOs
  • Child Sponsorship Organizations
  • Peace and Human Rights NGOs

Hopefully, this guide to the different types of charities provided you with further insight into all the ways you can support your community and the world at large. And when you’re looking for a Human Services charity to support, turn to GreenDrop. We partner with International NGOs and other Human Services charities, as well, so you can know that you’re making a difference. From Red Cross donations to Purple Heart, you can take the simple step toward making a difference. Schedule a donation now!

The Different Types of Charities

How to Prepare Your Items for Donation

The world of home goods and clothing donations is changing. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, how we go about packing up and dropping off donations has changed. As individuals, we try to keep everything clean and airtight, and as employees, we strive to uphold standards and practices the government regulates. However, what doesn’t change is the importance of donations. Even more so lately, donations benefit people and organizations on the East Coast and across the nation. Put your spring purging to good use and look here to learn how to prepare your items for donation. Most of these steps are ones you should follow despite the pandemic.

Wash Clothes Before Packing

You may not be able to completely sanitize your clothes before donating, but you can—and should—still clean them. Put any clothes you want to donate in the wash before packing them up. Use bleach when you can, and once they’re washed, try to wear gloves or limit touch when transferring the items to the dryer and the container.

Wipe Down Home Goods Before Packing

Similarly, the home goods and other items you donate should also be wiped down with a disinfectant. Pots and pans, small appliances, electronics—these should all be thoroughly wiped down. If you’re thinking about donating toys, we’d suggest washing when possible. If you don’t think there’s a great way to sanitize the item, hold off on donating for a while! The health of others involved in the donation process is essential.

Store in an Airtight Container

Once you’ve cleaned all the items for donation, try to store them in an airtight container. Though plastic bags are often used, and you still can use them, the ideal route for cleanliness is some sort of airtight container. That said, if you don’t have one, garbage bags and cardboard boxes will also do the trick! Just ensure you’re limiting touch or wearing gloves when you’re packing up.

Wear Gloves

Wearing gloves is key to preparing your items for donation! Though this wasn’t a necessity before COVID-19, it is a big part of cleanliness now. Throughout the process of packing up and dropping off donations, we strongly suggest wearing gloves. The less contact you have with the items you donate, the better.

Look Into Drop-Off Location Regulations

Different charitable organizations have different regulations set in place now when it comes to donating. GreenDrop in particular is not currently picking up donations, but we have a few drop-off locations opened and ready for you. We have precautionary procedures set in place for the safety of our donors and our employees—take a look at these before you drop-off!

At GreenDrop, you can choose to donate your items (which we turn into monetary donations) to four different organizations—the American Red Cross, the Military Order of the Purple Heart, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, and the National Federation of the Blind. We want to support our community, and when you donate to us, that’s what you’ll do as well. Bring your clothing donation to Franklin Mills or one of our other locations now!

A Short Guide to Apartment Donation Pick-Up

When you live in a small space like an apartment, any extra clutter can make your home seem much smaller than it is. To combat that problem, make sure to clean out and donate unused items as often as necessary so that you can fully maximize your space.

Where do I go to donate? Or who’s going to pick it up? These are questions you may be running into once you actually sort through things and made your donation pile.

In the past, donating from an apartment was a bit tougher than donating from a home. Because more often than not, charity organizations that pick-up donations wouldn’t come to apartments. Thankfully, with organizations like GreenDrop, that issue has shifted and started to absolve. So, if you don’t want to take all of your things to a GreenDrop drop-off location, take a look at this short guide to apartment donation pick-up—you won’t want to miss it!

Steps to Take for Apartment Donation Pick-Up

Compile Your Donations

Your first step to an apartment donation pick-up is compiling your items. You should make sure clothes fit nicely in plastic bags and breakables are wrapped in newspapers before placing them in boxes. This will make it easier on those picking up your donations. If you hope to give away furniture, most organizations will only pick up smaller pieces, like lamps and wooden chairs. The easier you make it for someone to pick up your items, the more donations they’ll likely be able to take.

It’s also a good idea to reach out to neighbors and other apartment residents to see if they have anything to donate. A large amount of donations neatly placed in one area makes it more likely for a truck to pick up your things.

Talk to Your Property Manager

That said, you should talk to your property manager before donating. See if they can organize something, or even talk to the donation pick-up organization to see if there’s a specific area they would like to pick up. Better yet, your property manager could end up setting up a monthly pick-up date and time with GreenDrop. This will allow for everyone to place their donations at the designated spot, which makes it easier for the pick-up person.

Schedule a Pick-Up

Finally, once you’ve talked to the property manager, either you or they can call GreenDrop or go online to schedule a donation pick-up. Make sure that all of the donations are out there in a timely manner on the day of pick-up. That way, you’ll know that your donations will be picked up and are on their way to help out national charitable organizations.

If you have any questions about GreenDrop and setting up an apartment donation pick-up, call us now at (888)-944-3767, or email us at Happy donating!