It’s economical and ecological to save such things as plastic bags, wrapping, food containers and waste for compost. If you can’t reuse it yourself, elementary school teachers (especially in the younger grades) are always looking for egg cartons and coffee tins to use for craft supplies, and clean plastic bags are gratefully accepted at your local library where they help protect books from the elements.
You can donate and buy used goods at charitable institutions like the two Habitat for Humanity ReStores, the many Salvation Army Thrift Stores throughout the city, and the St. Vincent de Paul Store in Westboro. The Operation Come Home centre for homeless youths accepts donations of food, clothing and other items, and they sells crafts and other items at their re: Purpose Store. You can donate sewing products and fabrics to EcoEquitable Boutique to receive a charitable tax receipt.
There are also many for-profit companies selling used items. Click here for a listing of used clothing stores, and here for used furniture stores. For consignment stores click here. The Parent Resource Centre provides this list of places to donate and obtain low-cost clothing and furniture.
Save money and the planet by purchasing or selling almost any used item on the free local classifieds Kijiji.ca and UsedOttawa.com. (You can also visit the Slow Ottawa shop here.) The best way to get clear results on classifieds is to limit the category (e.g. the Kijiji categories electronics, sporting goods, tools, furniture, appliances) before or after your search. After refining your search you can order the results by price or posting date.
For hassle-free disposal of items such as working appliances, furniture or building supplies you can always find a nice day to leave items curbside and post a Kijiji ad with a photograph and an announcement reading: “Free [Items] on curb at [address] as seen in photograph. First come, first serve. This ad will be removed when all items are gone. Please do not contact.” Nor does the item have to be your own. You can post an ad for any curbside freebie you come across using the handy Kijiji mobile app. If it’s free and useful, some guy with a truck will probably come by to salvage it.
Browse more than a hundred items on our Pinterest ‘Reuse It’ Board:
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