Declutter and do good.
Whether you’re moving around the block or around the globe soon – or just doing a big circuit-breaker-inspired cleaning purge – why not donate your old belongings to these volunteer organisations and causes in Singapore?
Note: Because of social distancing measures due to the Covid-19 pandemic, some donation procedures may have changed and some organisations may not be accepting donations during this time. Please inquire with the individual organisations to see if, when and how you can give their pre-loved items.
*Please note there will be further changes to the Covid-19 restrictions post the Phase 2 Heightened Alert on 21 June 2021. It goes without saying, the safety of everyone remains a top priority.
1. Food Bank Singapore
Have items in your pantry you’re not going to use? The Food Bank Singapore will take it. Founded in 2012, the organisation aims to be a centralised coordinating body in SG that collects surplus food; offer access and knowledge to cheaper sources of food; find alternative and creative ways of maximising excess food; and of course, donate food to almost 100,000 people each month through a network of approximately 200 charities, soup kitchens, and the like.
Most useful donations: “Any foods in good condition and not expired or opened,” says Nichol Ng, co-founder. But don’t feel like you need to run out and buy anything new. “We prefer that the food comes from homes where people are moving or relocating so it’s being put to good use.”
How to donate: If you wish to donate, you can drop off your cans and boxes of uneaten goodies at its Bank Boxes located all over the island (currently, you cannot donate directly to its warehouse).
2. The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army will take away all your unwanted things in usable condition and sell them at super-low prices at multiple Family Stores across the island. Since 1935, the organisation has been raising money for the poor and less privileged families, especially in areas of nursing and rehabilitation, and for children’s homes such as Gracehaven and The Haven.
Most useful donations: You name it — clothes, furniture, household goods, electronic devices, toys and books!
How to donate: All items can be dropped off at its Donation In Kind Booths found at eight locations in SG. In normal times, it also picks up bulky items like furniture and big appliances for an optional $60. Ask for a collection note upon pick up and receive an official non-tax deductible receipt in the mail. Or, if you’d like to buy donated items instead (every cent counts!), visit any of its 5 Family Stores after they are allowed to reopen.
3. Humanitarian Organisation of Migrant Economics (HOME)
Set up in 2004, the Humanitarian Organization of Migration Economics (HOME) protects the rights of migrant workers against crimes such as human trafficking and forced labour. “We help domestic workers and those from the shipbuilding and construction industries with issues ranging from overwork and inadequate food, to physical or psychological abuse and forced repatriation,” says Jo-Anne Aeria, Director, Partnerships and Communications.
Guided by the three pillars of welfare, empowerment and advocacy, HOME works with government bodies, corporations and community agencies to promote values of justice, equality and inclusion. It also provides shelter, legal aid, food and vocational courses for migrant workers, and has help desks and hotlines for Burmese workers, Filipino domestic workers, Indonesian domestic workers and other migrant workers.
Things to donate: Donate women’s clothing, unopened food, or toiletries, to their shelter, or craft items such as sewing machines, paints and drawing materials.
4. Singapore Council of Women’s Organisation (SCWO)
Need an even better reason to clean out your closet? Your castoffs can contribute to aiding women and children who are victims of family violence. The Singapore Council of Women’s Organizations (SCWO) Star Shelter is Singapore’s only secular crisis centre that provides a safe and temporary refuge. All items go to SCWO’s New2U thrift shop – a favourite amongst vintage-loving bargain hunters, and proceeds go to Star Shelter. Though they are not taking donations at the moment, you can keep updated on their website for when collections will resume.
Most useful donations: Clothes, accessories, household items, ornaments, books and toys. Do note that it doesn’t take in used towels and undergarments and household furnishings and appliances.
How to donate: As mentioned, the physical thrift store is closed until further notice, but take note of this message on its site: “As part of the shop operation, we are in need of black retail hangers and clothes racks to help with our day to day business. For more details about donating these items, please drop us an email at email@example.com.”
Singapore Council of Women’s Organisation
Address: 96 Waterloo St., 187967
Tel: 6837 0611
Opening hours: 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Mon. to Sat.); 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Sun.)
5. Angel Hearts
Angel Hearts is a community that crafts ‘angel gowns’ for babies’ burial clothing. Repurposed from donated wedding gowns and engagement dresses, these gowns are hand-sewn by volunteers and then delivered to bereaved families. Due to being unable to organise meet ups to deconstruct and package gowns during this covid period, they will be holding off collection of materials and gowns until further notice, do keep updated on their website.
Most useful donations: Lace fabric, duchess satin (in yards or bolts), white bias tapes, pearl buttons (1cm), white ribbons (width less than 0.5 inches), printed fabric/canvas which can be made into hand-sewn items, DIY jewellery supplies like Swarovski crystals.
How to donate: By courier, email them at firstname.lastname@example.org or drop off at their Tao Payoh warehouse (by appointment only)
Address: 734 Lorong 5 Toa Payoh, Storhub @ Toa Payoh, 319457
6. Image Mission
Help women from low-income and disadvantaged households secure jobs by donating work-appropriate outfits. Image Mission’s signature programme, Dress for Success, seeks to empower women to achieve economic independence by also coaching them to present themselves well at job interviews. They are cloesd for clothing donations until further notice but do keep updated on their website and Facebook page for when donations will resume.
What to donate: work appropriate clothes for job interviews, in current styles that are of good quality, in good condition and suitable for younger and older clients.
How to donate: Call them to arrange a drop off or email them at email@example.com to make an appointment.
Address: 6 Ubi Rd 1, #04-11 Wintech Centre, 319457 (By appointment only)
Tel: 6747 6510
Opening hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Mon. to Fri.)
7. The Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore (MINDS)
The Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore (MINDS) runs four social enterprise thrift shops around the island, where they provide customer service and vocational training to the intellectually disabled. All sales proceeds go to the trainees are allowance. You may donate your preloved items here, as long as they are still in good working condition. You cannot currently visit their 4 flagship thrift stores around the island because of Covid, but do keep updated on their website on how and when you can donate items.
Most useful donations: See the full list of things you can and cannot donate to the thrift shops here. You can also donate items such as cleaning products, educational games, food, gadgets, office furniture and appliances to MINDS Centre, School, and Residential Home. Find a list of items you can donate here.
8. National Library Board
The National Library Board welcomes donations that will “enrich” their collection, so if you think your mini library at home has an artefact or two worthy of being accepted, go ahead and fill up this donation form.
Acceptable donations: private papers and personal correspondences of Singapore pioneers who contributed to Singapore’s development; materials on the history of education, business, science and technology in Singapore and more.
How to donate: Complete the donation form noted above, and you will be contacted. For donation enquiries, please contact the National Library Board at: firstname.lastname@example.org
National Library Board
Address: 100 Victoria Street, National Library Board Building, 188064
Tel: 6332 3255
Opening hours: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Mon. to Fri.)
9. RENEW (Recycling Nation’s Electronic Waste) Porgramme
The RENEW (REcycling Nation’s Electronic Waste) programme is sponsored by Starhub, TES-AMM (an e-waste recycling company) and DHL, who handles the logistics of collecting the e-waste.
Acceptable donations: You can recycle almost any electronic item with this programme, such as DVD players, keyboards, VCRs, routers, wires and printers, and you don’t have to be a Starhub customer to participate.
How to donate: The only catch? Your items must fit through the bin’s slot, which is 470mm by 120mm. The great news is that there are currently 443 bins at 397 locations around the island (however, all collection from the bins is suspended due to Covid until further notice). Click here to find out more about the programme and look under “List of RENEW Bin Sites” to find a drop off point near you – for your future use.
Tip: For other e-waste programmes in Singapore, check out the NEA’s list of E-waste recycling programs here. There is even a programme that accepts used Ink & Toner Cartridges called “Project Homecoming”.
RENEW (Recycling Nation’s Electronic Waste) Porgramme
Address: Multiple drop off locations islandwide
10. Visio Optical
If you have reading glasses or sunglasses you don’t need anymore, drop them off at Visio Optical. The store will channel them to people who are unable to afford or access quality eye care. They will receive the necessary eye exam and lenses will be made for them to fit the spectacle frames you donated.
How to donate: You may bring them in person to the store (after Covid-prevention measures ease), or you may send them by regular mail, to this address: Visio Optical, 43 Holland Drive, 01-67, Singapore 270043. You can call them at 67760052 for more information on donating.
Address: 43 Holland Dr., #01-67, 270043
Tel: 6776 0052
Opening hours: 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Mon. to Sat.); 10 a.m to 6 p.m (Sun.)
11. Blessings in a Bag
Delivering “blessings” to disadvantaged kids and rural communities in Southeast Asia and Singapore, Blessings In A Bag accepts donations-in-kind from such as clothing, school supplies, hygiene products, and kids-related products to distribute to needy communities. Unfortunately, they are not accepting donations at the moment, but you can read about their response to the Covid situation – and are still helping families and children in need, even while working from home!
Acceptable donations: Check out the list of items that they are currently accepting, that include children’s clothes, NTUC Fairprice vouchers, and products like rubbing alcohol, and eyedrops in brand new condition.
How to donate: If you have items that are on their list, do email them at email@example.com or contact them here
Blessings in a Bag
Address: 315 Outram Rd., Tan Boon Liat Building, #08-06A, 169074
Tel: 6699 6980
Donate unwanted textiles to Greensquare and help them in their pursuit to reduce textile waste. Collected recyclables are sold to second-hand textile importers in developing countries to support their business model of providing free collection services and educational activities. They are currently closed for collection until end of June due to the current Covid situation but do keep updated on their website for when collections will resume.
What to donate: clean clothes, clean, wearable shoes, accessories (blets, bags), household linens like bedsheets. Find a list here
How to donate: You can drop off items at any one of their drop off points or contact them here
13. Metta Welfare Association
Meta Welfare Association provides the community with welfare services that include medical care for those less fortunate, or disadvantaged, education for children who have learning disabilities, and hospice care for the mentally ill. Here’s how you can help support them and their initiatives.
Things to donate: Clothing, furniture, used IT equipment, groceries, diapers, and hygiene products. Find a list of items that you can donate here.
How to donate: You can deliver these items to Metta Home for the Disabled (2 Woodlands Street 31, 738580, do call them at 6365 7666 before stopping by. You can also call them at 6365 7666 for enquires or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Meta Welfare Association
Address: 32 Simei St, 529950
Tel: 6580 4688
Opening hours: 8:30 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. (Mon. to Fri.)
14. The Barn by Cornerstone Community Services
If you haven’t heard of The Barn, they are a volunteer run thrift store that sells clothes, accessories, household appliances and a variety of other items at well, thrifty prices. The store is run by cornerstone community services, an organisation that helps families through financial assistance, and provides support services such as youth mentoring, marriage preparation, caregiver support, counselling, and case management. Their outlet Penjuru outlet is said to be popular with our migrant workers. All their locations are currently closed due to the current Covid situation. Keep updated on their website and social media pages for more information on when you can start donating again.
What to donate: Men and women’s clothes, household items, toys, accessories, and sports equipment. Fine a list of what to donate and what not to donate, here.
How to donate: Items can be dropped off at any of their locations in the addresses below
The Barn by Cornerstone Community Services
11 East Coast Rd., The Odeon Katong, #01-14/15, 428772
Tel:9679 7379 (whatsapp)
Opening hours: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Tues. to Fri.); 9.30 a.m to 12.30 p.m (Sun.)
Ang Mo Kio St51, Blk 591A, #01-35, 561591
Tel: 9679 7379 (whatsapp)
Opening hours: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Mon. to Fri.); 6 p.m to 8 p.m (We d.); (Mon. to Fri.); 10 a.m to to 12.30 p.m (Wed.)
27 Penjuru Walk, #01-01, 608538
Tel: 8811 9362 (whatsapp)
Opening hours: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. (Mon. to Fri.); 6 p.m to 9.30 p.m (Mon. to Fri.); 2 p.m to 9:30 p.m (Sat. to Sun.)
15. Jamiyah Children’s Home
Jamiyah Children’s Home (JCH) – Darul M’Wa is a home for children from underprivileged and dysfunctional families that have been victim of neglect.
What to donate: groceries, educational supplies, clothing, and furniture. Find a list of items you can donate, here or check out their bi-weekly wishlist on their Facebook or Instagram to see what items they are in need of.
How to donate: You can call them at 6344 9533 to let them know of your donations, or e-mail them at email@example.com for enquires on donations.
Jamiyah Children’s Home
Address: 15 Guillemard Cres, 399910
Tel: 6344 9533
Opening hours: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Mon. to Thurs.); 9 a.m to 6 p.m (Fri. to Sun.)
Originally by Priyanka Elhence/ Updated by Christopher Ong + Mizah Salik, January 2019 / Additional reporting: Elizabeth Liew, some text adapted from The Singapore Women’s Weekly, May 2020 / Last updated by K Praveena
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