Undergraduate Blog / Career Development

What makes Donii better

Picture this: You’re rustling through the back of your closet one afternoon on an ambitious effort to de-clutter your room when you reach an overwhelming conclusion… You have way too much stuff. Well, you knew this fact before, but now your things have somehow exploded across your room like a tornado came sweeping through moments before. However, this time around you pledge to do something about the mess (instead of stuffing it back under your bed like last spring cleaning).

So, where do you begin?

Well, you could just throw the clothes out. Easy, simple, out of sight. But then you realize this solution benefits no one, and exacerbates the whole “landfills growing, climate changing, the world might be coming to an end if we do not change, blah blah blah ” problem. And then a lightbulb appears and you reach a conclusion: the nearby Morgan Memorial Goodwill! You’ll just pack your things into a bag and drop them off at the nearest location for someone else to reuse them. End of story, right?

Not quite. Goodwill makes it easy to donate by having convenient drop-off locations and making donors feel good about their choice. However, Goodwill has become known for pricing their products to maximize profit and even selling them online (Rover, WordPress). This means that the clothes you donate will not benefit your local community.

And what’s worse? If the donations are not sold within four weeks, they eventually end up at textile recyclers (Strutner, HuffPost). This is the case with 80% of donated goods in America, which is about 3.8 billion pounds of clothing. *cringes*. These textile organizations, like S.M.A.R.T., re-sell some of the donations into the U.S. used clothing industry, which encourages the cycle to re-start. In addition, 45% of the clothing is sent overseas into markets with more demand. “Sending clothes overseas can majorly hinder the textile industries in developing countries, robbing locals of jobs and income,” claims Suzy Strutner, author from HuffPost. King, the executive director of S.M.A.R.T., claims 85 percent of all the clothing sold each year ends up in landfills. This means that most people do not even attempt to donate the clothing, giving it zero chance of benefiting someone else.
But there is a solution to these problems.

Donii wants to end material need as a symptom of poverty and keep donated goods in the local community. This means they are not resold for profit or thrown away. The Donii app is a donation matchmaking service that gets donated items to people in need. Through Donii’s network of local charity partners, donors are connected to families who lack exactly what the donor has to spare.

Because Donii sets up shop at the places people live and work, we make impactful giving both easy and convenient. I have learned so much about the donation process while interning at Donii this summer and can now look forward to giving better.