Want to make your old clothes work harder? Give Your Best are looking to reinvent donations; doing more with your hand-me-ons. Whether you're doing a deep cleanse of your wardrobe or looking for a more minimal approach to dressing with only the necessities, many charity shops are still overloaded with lockdown leftovers. The excitement of freedom for charity shop's reopening may be fading, but most are still full to the brim with the pandemics realisations of excess. Fear not, there are many more options for reusing your unwanted items which can give them a second lease of life. Give Your Best is a prime example: they not only repurpose your donations but they give refugees the chance to choose what to wear. This may sound like a small act, but it can be empowering to finally have a choice when so much is out of your control. Turning donations into gifts, they allow a catalogue of clothes and accessories to be 'shopped' for free for people in the UK who are refugees, seeking asylum, destitute, NRPF or with precarious immigration status.
Started during difficult Covid-19 times, the struggle of surviving on £5.60 encouraged the two female founders to give back in a way that can really give people a boost. They depend on volunteers and you can even contribute yourself by collecting clothes and taking pictures - easy as that! This network of helpers has brought the idea to life at speed. With most of the clothes that get donated to charity not making it to the point of sale (often sent to recycling), you can choose to put your items into the hands of small movements that can make your donations go further, reducing the items lost in big operations.
More small operations doing big things include The Free Shop Lebanon. A country in turmoil with around a third of the population made up of refugees struggling under hyperinflation, political unrest and resources running low, means now, more than ever, people need access to free basics and choices! Or if you're looking closer to home, find an organisation providing aid and free shops in your city, such as Aid Box in Bristol; or, join Choose Love's urgent fundraising appeal through the Thrift+ app, an easy way to send off items from your wardrobe to be quickly sorted and sold for a current cause.
See here for the Give Your Best guide and get sorting ;)