It’s always nice to give someone your hand me downs. You know that person from work whose kids are just a bit younger than yours. Or maybe that lady at church who you know could really use some extra blankets. Maybe if you’re like me, you have a father in law who loves woodworking. Whatever the case, it’s hard sometimes to just throw away something. Recycling can be really difficult in extreme rural areas making it more harmful to the environment than throwing it away. What do I mean by that? Well, if it takes you 30 minutes one way to recycle a few boxes, what was the point in driving an hour of your gas to take something to recycle? You still released pollutants into the air, and you would have done less damage by just reducing the amount of stuff, in this case cardboard, so you don’t harm the environment too much.
Then we have thrift stores. My personal favorite is the Salvation Army. I love all the programs that they do including thrifting, but I know when I donate to them, the money goes to feed the hungry, disaster relief, local church programs, kids being sexually trafficked, and so many more programs. Don’t believe me, check it out here!
But then I read about the Give Back Box. It allured me because it’s not always easy to drive to a thrift store. It’s on the other side of town for me, and also the larger thrifts are easily a 30-45 minute drive. So when I go, I usually make it worth my trip. And then I thought, what about people who don’t have cars? What if you’re elderly and lost your license? What if you had a DUI and can’t drive because you’re suspended? What if you want to help and your circumstances just won’t let you?
That’s why I found the Give Back Box to be such a fantastic idea. What if it worked? What if this could be a revolutionary way for people to help? What if this turned out to be a time saver for busy moms and dads struggling to make each day anyway? I had to investigate this further!
The first attempt that I had with the Give Back Box is that my printer wasn’t working. After my husband took a look (I know I can do it, but he seriously spoils me!), the printer was back and running. Sadly, the mail lady had already ran, and she was searching frantically for my package that I didn’t have ready. So I thought I’d print another, and I did. I had it ready the second day, and I left it on my kitchen table without her able to pick it up again. The third day (I’m pretty sure as nice as she is she secretly wanted to kill me), I had the package ready and a second one!
After multiple starting attempts, I realized that you can send without being registered, but you have to wait for the first package to ship out. The Give Back Box was waiting for that package to arrive before I could ship another. Nice and resourceful. So shipping multiple boxes on the same computer will not work.
Registering is so worth your time! It helps you keep track of your donation items, tax receipts, and you can ship multiple packages at a time! The next time I shipped, I sent 3. While the mail carrier was very kind, she wasn’t too thrilled on the idea of picking up 3 packages at a time. So just remember to be thoughtful to those mail carriers who walk as well as the ones with little vehicles rather than the larger mail trucks. We are fortunate that she has a mail truck, but not every mail carrier has that luxury.
Would I do it again? Yes! This was a fantastic experience and idea! I absolutely love the idea of shipping the packages. While this creates more work for the postal workers, I am happy to support their jobs and give others work at Goodwill. I am still all about supporting the Salvation Army. It’s just that as a rural area, my monetary donations will probably go a lot farther than my stuff. If there is a program that becomes available like this for the Salvation Army, I will be trying it and posting all about here at JAT!
My conclusion for the Give Back Box program is that it’s a fantastic idea. For those who live in rural areas or are busy parents, maybe elderly, maybe it’s not convenient to donate, this is the right approach for you! If you live close, walking distance or have a way to get a donation truck to your residence, I would stick to those approaches for the sake of gas and convenience. But the Give Back Box really opens doors to those who want to help and may not be able to do so! Wishing all my JAT readers the best and encouraging others to help in your communities!