Zero Waste Holidays
donateNYC Holiday Gift Guide
The holiday season is a time of giving, which makes it the perfect occasion to shop at one of our donateNYC nonprofit Partners! By shopping at a donateNYC Partner thrift store or reuse center, you will save money, reduce waste, and support critical social service providers with your purchase. Whether you are looking for the latest designer trends for the fashion enthusiast in your life or vinyl records for the music lover, donateNYC partners have something for everybody on your list.
To make your zero waste holiday shopping easier, donateNYC has created a handy gift guide to highlight examples of unique finds offered by donateNYC Partner stores. You’ll find information on where to buy gifts like designer clothing, upcycled jewelry, vintage housewares, refurbished electronics, and more. (Because these items are unique, please remember to contact stores before shopping to see what they have in stock.) In addition to making New Yorkers more stylish, each purchase will help NYC get closer to its goal of Zero Waste by 2030 by giving items second life instead of sending them to landfill.
For all these reasons and more, instead of giving your loved ones something everybody else has, this year, be the hero of the holidays by giving a one-of-a kind gift from a donateNYC Partner! You can find our Partners and many other incredible reuse locations year-round by downloading the donateNYC app available on both Android and iOS.
For the full gift guide, click here or on the picture below.
Happy shopping from donateNYC!
NYC Marathon Textile Collection
Over 45 tons of textiles collected at NYC Marathon
On Sunday, November 4, more than 50,000 runners waited in anticipation to begin the TCS New York City Marathon. With early morning temperatures in the 40s, marathoners brought jackets, sweatpants, blankets, and other warm clothing to wear for a few hours while waiting in the start area. These warm layers are no longer needed by the runners after they start the race, but still have the potential to be reused rather than going to landfill.
Since 2013, the donateNYC has supported Goodwill Industries of Greater New York and Northern New Jersey and the New York Road Runners in collecting clothing discarded by runners of the NYC Marathon. This collaboration has diverted over 863,000 pounds of clothing from landfill, and has also helped Goodwill NYNJ support their mission to create jobs and provide social services to New Yorkers. This year, Goodwill collected over 91,000 pounds of textiles from runners, up from 86,000 pounds collected in 2017.
Thank you to all of our volunteers and everyone who participated in our Zero Waste Marathon efforts!
Climate Week NYC
DSNY introduces new initiative at Climate Week NYC
Climate Week NYC is the time and place where the world gathers to showcase amazing climate action and discusses how to do more.
Taking place between September 24-30, 2018, Climate Week NYC is one of the key summits in the international calendar and has been driving climate action forward since it was first launched by The Climate Group in 2009.
During Climate Week, Commissioner Garcia announced that DSNY will launch a first-of-its kind pitch-fest and project competition aimed at closing the loop through reuse partnerships during Circular City Week in March. This event will bring together businesses looking to reduce their textile waste with reuse nonprofits using innovative strategies to keep materials out of landfill while ultimately generating knowledge, connecting ideas, and forging cross-sector partnerships that disrupt cycles of textile waste.
Climate week is also a great time to talk about the remarkable accomplishments of all of the donateNYC Partners whose work is critical in supporting the City’s zero waste initiative, which aims to send zero waste to landfills by 2030.
In the past year, donateNYC Partners diverted over 98 million pounds of goods from the landfill by facilitating donations and reuse. 87% percent of the diversion fell into the categories of food and textiles, two significant sources of waste in New York. According to the Department of Sanitation’s most recent Waste Characterization Study, 21% of all residential waste in NYC consists of food scraps and 6% consists of textiles—it’s clear that donateNYC Partners are responding to urgent waste reduction needs in a big way.
Donation Spotlight: Out of the Classroom and into the Community
Class is dismissed for the summer but NYC public school staff is still working hard. In preparation for a fresh start in the fall, custodians at many schools are rotating out items such as desks, chairs, and shelving and finding many useful items in surplus.
Since March of this year, DSNY’s Zero Waste Schools and donateNYC teams have been working with schools throughout the city to keep their surplus goods out of the waste stream and in the hands of those who can use them. To date, the collaboration has diverted over 20 tons of desks and chairs from landfill while providing crucial resources to community groups.
One of the most powerful examples of surplus school furniture doing good was unveiled on August 4th at donateNYC Partner PowerMyLearning’s event. PowerMyLearning helps students in low-income communities, together with their teachers and families, harness the power of digital learning to improve educational outcomes—and they carry out their work using donated computers, keeping electronic waste out of landfill.
PowerMyLearning used desks and chairs donated by a public school in the Bronx through the donateNYC Exchange to outfit a community computing lab at the Caribbean American Center of New York in Brooklyn. For weeks leading up to the event, PowerMyLearning staff worked with CACNY to plan and prepare. In addition to transporting and setting up donated school furniture, they developed instructional programs for the lab and loaded a broad array of educational software onto the computers.
At the inaugural workshop in the space, PowerMyLearning opened the lab to kids and parents from the community and assisted participants in exploring a variety of educational games, allowing kids to destroy asteroids with math-fueled laser beams or build DNA strands, while their parents cheered them on. Jean Alexander of CACNY expressed the organization’s gratitude for the computer lab with enthusiasm: “the equipment will continue to be utilized to serve our communities—that I can PROMISE!”
The great success of this computer lab initiative was helped tremendously by the donated furniture. Anny Chen, Program Coordinator at PowerMyLearning, put it this way: “The school furniture obtained through donateNYC’s Exchange provided an opportunity for CACNY to re-invent their space into an environment that is both welcoming and practical for those that they serve. Our team was happy to participate in this multi-organizational project, which resulted in a community having access to resources that they may not have had access to before. Thanks donateNYC!”
For schools who would like to see their surplus items support such valuable programs or for nonprofits who would like to find donated items, giving goods and finding goods is just a click away: register here for the donateNYC Exchange and write your own reuse success story!
donateNYC Partnership Report
donateNYC Partner Impact 2017-18
In the past year, donateNYC Partners diverted over 98 million pounds of goods from the landfill by facilitating donations and reuse. 87% percent of the diversion fell into the categories of of food and textiles, two significant sources of waste in New York. According to the Department of Sanitation’s most recent Waste Characterization Study, 21% of all residential waste in NYC consists of food scraps and 6% consists of textiles—it’s clear that donateNYC Partners are responding to urgent waste reduction needs in a big way.
The amount of goods diverted from landfill by donateNYC Partners reduced potential greenhouse gas emissions by 175,500 metric tons of carbon dioxide, an amount equal to keeping 37,026 passenger vehicles off the road or planting 143,900 acres of air-cleaning forests!
donateNYC Partner impact goes beyond environmental—most of our Partners work directly with the communities around them in important ways. In the past year, donateNYC Partners reached more than 1.5 million New Yorkers through family services, housing, health care, professional development, food bank programs, and more. What is more, our Partners helped neighbors help each other: Partners engaged the services of over 34,000 volunteers, who logged a combined total of 27 years of volunteer time!
In addition to breaking down impact, the donateNYC Partnership Report also explores the growth and diversity of the Partnership. In the past year, the partnership expanded by about 70% to over 70 nonprofit organizations. The Partnership also welcomed members from a broader variety of organizations than ever before, including housing providers, animal shelters, and food rescue organizations, housed in countless locations across the five boroughs.
The 2017-18 Partnership Report celebrates the remarkable accomplishments of all of the donateNYC Partners whose work is critical in supporting the City’s zero waste initiative, which aims to send zero waste to landfills by 2030.
Register for the donateNYC Exchange
Register your business or nonprofit for the donateNYC Exchange!
The donateNYC Exchange is an online platform where businesses and nonprofits can donate or receive gently used or surplus materials at no cost. Whether starting up a company, expanding, renovating, moving, or clearing out unsold stock, there is no bad time for giving and finding on the Exchange!
Beyond reduced waste and a cleaner city, registering for the Exchange has benefits for donors and recipients alike: organizations can cut purchasing costs by receiving free, usable goods that support their operations, while donor businesses can save on storage and disposal costs and may receive tax deductions for their donations.
Exchange users include restaurants, arts programs, retail outlets, social service providers, property managers, schools, manufacturers, hotels, community centers, and cultural institutions, to name just a few. With close to 1,000 registrants from countless professional fields across donateNYC’s web platforms, donateNYC’s reuse community is vibrant and active—make sure to check the Exchange often for inspiration on what your company could donate or receive secondhand for free.
Common items listed on the exchange include office furniture & supplies, building materials, and electronics, among many more. Other items claimed from the Exchange have been repurposed for assorted reuse projects, as was the case with our partner Teaching Beyond the Square, who converted almost 1000 outdated uniform shirts into cotton yarn for knitting, crocheting, and weaving activities at their community center.
If you think the Exchange would be right for your organization, feel free to learn more at our FAQ page, contact us for more information, or register right away! For more examples of Exchange success stories, read our most recent donation spotlight article, or take it from those who know best, Exchange users themselves:
"Our office furniture donation through donateNYC was right on time. It helped make our new office a welcoming and professional place for our clients and community members. Thanks, donateNYC!"
- Amaha Kassa, African Communities Together
“donateNYC enabled Earth Angel to keep lightly used props from our clients out of landfills and get them into the hands of organizations in need. Thanks to donateNYC, we can help our clients keep moving toward their zero waste goals.”
- Earth Angel Sustainable Production Services
“Because of the continued support of our local hotel partners through donateNYC, the NYC Rescue Mission is able to more effectively use our resources and provide a better service for our homeless neighbors in need. These donations of toiletries, towels, and sheets help us create a comfortable environment where our guests can not just survive but thrive.”
- Colt Emswiler, New York City Rescue Mission
“Through donating on the donateNYC Exchange, we saved money by not having to pay a large item-dumping fee and we had the satisfaction of knowing it was helping a community close to ours. Using donateNYC is also a great way to build connections. Shalema was a wonderful person to meet and I got to visit her school. There are really no cons to using donateNYC.”
- Jennifer Petersen, Bronx Community Solutions
“It has been a pleasure to work with the people at donateNYC. Their values align with ours at The Apparel Group and the Exchange platform has made it so easy to give to small businesses in need. We have met the most amazing individuals doing such great work throughout the city and are proud to support them—and keep these items out of landfills!”
- Erin Panek, The Apparel Group
“As a product of the NYC public schools who is currently an administrator of an independent school with resources, I cannot allow valuable resources go to waste when I know there are many, many non-profits in need. At the beginning and end of every school year, we go through our library collection and instructional material inventory due to a shortage of storage space. These extra items are then donated to local organizations through the DonateNYC Exchange and Materials for the Arts. We have donated everything from furniture to books and art supplies. Finding a good home for these resources is our goal. Thanks, DonateNYC for making it possible.”
- Lily Shum, Trevor Day School
Register your business or nonprofit now!
If your business or nonprofit accepts second-hand or surplus material goods in NYC, for either re-sell or to distribute to social service clients, then you may qualify for various city-funded services from donateNYC and the NYC Department of Sanitation. Read below to discover the service(s) that apply to you and your business or nonprofit.
This website provides several convenient tools and resources to help New Yorkers keep usable goods out of the waste stream:
Click here to have your organization (thrift shop, nonprofit, antique store, etc.) listed on the donateNYC website as a place where residents can donate, purchase, or receive second-hand goods. donateNYC lists hundreds of places throughout NYC where residents can donate or find second-hand goods, make sure organization is listed by registering now!
The donateNYC Exchange is designed to help NYC based organizations either find or donate surplus materials. Common items made available and posted on the exchange include things like surplus office furniture and bulk workplace supplies. Register here If your organization has items in bulk to donate or is interested in receiving donations of bulk items.
If your organization is a nonprofit organization with operations in NYC that regularly accepts and distributes second-hand goods, then you may qualify to become a donateNYC Partner. Find out more about the donateNYC Partnership by clicking here.
Discover where the nearest place is to either donate or find second-hand goods by searching the donateNYC website or mobile app (iOS & Android). Both will allow you to enter your exact location to locate all the opportunities to give and find goods that are just around the corner.