Thank you for donating to Treasure City Thrift!
We couldn’t do our work without great donations from our community!
Please DO NOT leave donations when the store is closed! They are a code violation (which could result in a big fine for us), may be taken, made into a mess or used to burn down the store (yes, this has happened). Please check out store hours at the top right of our site.
We Take Almost Anything, But We Do Not Want...
- Wet or dirty clothing – wash and dry it first please – we can’t do it for you and we can’t sell it dirty.
- Broken items – fix or recycle them please
- Broken appliances can go to Ecology Action
- Scrap metal – take to Ecology Action
- Building Materials – take it to the Re-Store
- Hazardous Wastes (aerosol cans, explosive materials, paint cans, solvents, etc.) – take them to Household Hazardous Waste
- CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) monitors
- Child Car Seats – give them to a friend or recycle them at these places.
Landfill Diversion Program
Of our donated goods, we estimate that:
- 80% are reused
- 15% are recycled
- 5% are waste
This is our commitment towards Zero Waste. The Landfill Diversion Program partners us with Yellow Bike Project and helps keep items destined for the landfill in circulation for many years to come.
Where your Donations Go
The Treasure City reuse process is as follows:
Stage 1: Material Support
Stage 2: Store Sales
Since a thrift store should be thrifty, we price our used goods accordingly and they sell very well. All items are color tagged and after they have been in the store for two months, they are automatically discounted by 50%. Look for the current colored tag discount when you are shopping.
Stage 3: Monthly 25c Sales
Items that are not good enough to go out on the floor or have been on display for more than 2 months are set aside for our monthly 25c sales.
Stage 4: Really Really Free Market
Every last Sunday of the month from 1-3 pm, the Chestnut Community Park (2207 East 16th St at Chestnut) is overtaken by a festival of free. As a community we have many more resources than we do as individuals. If we share our resources we won’t need to buy as many new ones. This uses fewer of the Earth’s resources, and fewer of our working hours, leaving us more time to devote to ourselves and our communities. The market is a mixture of reuse, recycling, sharing and community building. We share skills, goods, ideas, smiles, friendship, excitement, plans and more.
Why We Don't Send Clothes to "Developing" Nations
What happens to all those old clothes you bring to the Salvation Army or Goodwill Industries? Over 90% of the clothes donated in the US are being sold all over Africa as second-hand clothing and have created a multi-million dollar business. In Zambia in the 1970s there were over 85 clothing manufactures employing over 10,000 people. Today Zambia depends solely on imported goods, making it less and less self-sufficient.
Other countries such as Kenya have seen their local textile industries decimated by imports of second-hand clothing. The justification for such imports is that the clothes are cheaper and the displaced textile workers will find more valuable employment elsewhere. Instead, workers can become permanently unemployed or employed at lower wages, and a country can lose an industry that might have provided the first stepping-stone to the development of a manufacturing sector.
Don’t believe us? Watch the movie T-Shirt Travels that documents the secondhand clothing market in developing nations. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
- Thinking Outside the Box about Trade, Development, and Poverty Reduction
- Poverty and the Range of Goods: Used Clothing
- Salaula: The World of Secondhand Clothing and Zambia
- The Truth About Where Your Donated Clothes End Up
- African Cloth, Export Production, and Secondhand Clothing in Kenya
- Used-Clothes Exports to the Third World: Economic Considerations
- Helping or hindering? Controversies around the international secod-hand clothing trade
- Do second-hand clothing exports harm countries of the “Third World”?
- Used-Clothing Donations, and Apparel Production in Africa