Recently I published this post about actually using your reusable bags and this one about refusing free stuff. But even if we start now, the fact remains: many of us have collected a number of bags we never use.
So what can be done with those miscellaneous bags so they get used and make a difference to someone else?
In no particular order:
- Use them to collect donations for your favorite charity and leave the bag as part of the donation.
- Donate them to a food pantry, homeless shelter, or women’s shelter. Be sure to call first to see if that is something they would appreciate receiving.
- Leave them for another shopper at the grocery store. This is especially helpful at a store such as Aldi or Save-A-Lot, where shoppers are expected to bag their own groceries, but can really be done anywhere. Turn around and offer one to the person behind you in line. Or, leaving some with a free sign will help shoppers feel more comfortable taking them.
- Contact libraries and see if they would appreciate them. Libraries often offer a bag to patrons to carry stacks of books. Libraries are also go-to hangouts for homeless people in my area; in addition to internet and books, heat/AC, bathrooms and water fountains are vital resources for everyone and freely available at the library. Your librarian may know just who could benefit from your unused tote or backpack.
- Contact your teacher friends or a local school and see if they would like them. Teachers and schools are often short on cash and supplies. Your bag might me just the thing a teacher could use. Or perhaps there’s a student who could use it and your gift will give the school the opportunity to provide for that child.
What about you? Do you have any ideas that are not on this list? Leave them in the comments below!