Be skeptical of alleged charities who only want clothes while turning down furniture, appliances, housewares, and other valuables, says Ottawa Neighbourhood Services executive director Patricia Lemieux.
“It’s a lucrative business for organizations that can do this,” she said.
She wants the city to educate residents about clothing donations and the difference between real charities and those pretending to benefit the community.
Legitimate organizations aren’t allowed to have boxes at park-and-ride lots, she said.
The city has given “Jubilee Merchandise” the boot for setting up so-called donation boxes on city property.
“There’s no charity involved here. You’re not donating to anything,” said Kanata South Coun. Allan Hubley.
“You’re giving your stuff to somebody who’s going to resell it.”
Many bins across Ottawa are labelled “Support TYN.”
The Sun called the phone numbers listed on some boxes, which went straight to voicemail.
Back at Neighbourhood Services, generous corporate contributions from clothing retailer Jones New York, the Albert at Bay Suite Hotel, and several stores in the Rideau Centre are keeping the charity — which Lemieux says receives no funding — afloat.
The organization picks up items and issues tax receipts for certain donations, such as furniture.