The Doing Good blog follows area charities and social service agencies.

About Amy Umble: Amy Umble writes about religion and social issues affecting the Fredericksburg community. You can email her at

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Spring clean for good

I received this press release from a website that uses your old stuff for charity. It reminded me that it’s time to spring clean–and also a good time to remind you about local charities that can use your stuff. I’m also telling you aboud the website, The Giving Effect, because it seems pretty interesting.

  • Rappahannock Goodwill Industries’ stores will take donations. The agency also has standalone donation sites in area shopping centers. Click here for details on where to donate.
  • Salvation Army has a thrift store at 2010 Lafayette Blvd. Donations are accepted 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., call 540/891-2242 for details.
  • Magnolia Thrift Shop is at 3993 Lafayette Blvd. and takes household furnishings, kitchenware, lamps, collectibles, crafts, toys, books, and decorator items. Proceeds benefit Hospice Support Care. Call 540/710-6226 for details.
  • Rappahannock Council on Domestic Violence takes used cell phones for abuse victims to call for help in emergencies.  The office is at 271 Warrenton Rd. Call 540/373-9372 for details.

And here’s the press release:

Spring Cleaning Can Make You Happier this Year

More than 1,300 charities can use the stuff that’s cluttering your home.

It’s time to throw open the windows, spruce up your home, and get rid of clutter—the emotionally gratifying way: donate things you no longer need to causes in your neighborhood or around the country.

The Giving Effect ( is a new website that makes it easy to discover who needs your stuff. Donors browse the site by needs, location, or categories to find a cause, then complete a simple form to arrange a pickup, drop off, or shipment.

Participating organizations include Operation Kid Equip, a nonprofit in Royal Oak, Michigan that provides school supplies, toiletries, and food to tens-of-thousands of kids in need, The American Cancer Society, and Habitat for Humanity locations across the country. Hundreds of animal shelters have also listed their needs with The Giving Effect.

These organizations can use almost anything you can spare, from clothes, food, and books to cleaning supplies and lumber.

Following your donation, the site generates an easily shareable web page that describes your gift and who it helped. By sharing the page, donors inspire others to give and thus increase the impact of their donation.

Spring cleaning may be a chore, but if you’re doing it for a good cause it will leave you feeling great!