Donation FAQs

 

Why Donate to Goodwill

At Goodwill of Chattanooga, we believe that when people go to work it improves lives, strengthens families and communities, and energizes the economy. When you donate clothing, electronics, household goods and other items, you can be sure that more than 85 cents of every dollar sold through our stores goes directly to supporting our mission of changing lives through the power of work.  We’ve embraced the philosophy of a “hand up, not a handout” since 1923, and we’re a part of a larger organization that has lived out that principle for more than a century.

You can also feel good knowing that you’re helping the planet.  Goodwill is an environmental pioneer and social innovator in the “reduce, reuse, repurpose” practice. Goodwill reduces textiles’ contribution to global pollution by promoting clothing reuse and recycling garments that aren’t purchased.  Collectively, Goodwill Industries redirects 4.6 billion pounds from landfills each year.

How does Goodwill compare to other organizations with donation bins?

Many organizations – both profit and nonprofit – offer stand-alone bins for donation drop-off.  These bins are convenient and many are operated by reputable charitable organizations.  Some are not, however. The State of Tennessee requires that organizations clearly and accurately identify themselves so people know who is receiving their donations.  There should be contact information for the organization that benefits from your generosity. For more information on donation bins click here

Does Goodwill pick up items?

We do not pick up items; however, for large estates or commercial donations, please call 423-629-2501.

What are your donation center hours of operation?

Mon – Sat 9am – 7pm, Sun 10am – 6pm

How do I donate items to Goodwill?

If you’ve got a donation, we likely have a convenient place to take it.  Check our locations to find a donation center near you.

What happens to items I donate?

When you donate, you help put people to work.  How?  The items we collect are sorted, priced and sold in our stores.  One-of-a-kind items are sold on our auction website, and the remaining donated items are sold by the pound in our outlet store.  We use the money from the sale of these items to fund job training programs and employment services.  Any unpurchased items are recycled to minimize waste.

What does Goodwill accept as donations?

We accept clothing, shoes, accessories, books, furniture, small appliances, household items, CDS/videotapes/DVDs/records, linens, sporting equipment.  While we like to say we can accept almost anything, there are a few items we cannot accept.  Please click here to review a list of items we can and can’t accept.

What items doesn’t Goodwill accept?

Please do not leave items that are not safe, legal or practical for us to process such as:

  • Wet, Moldy or Soiled Items
  • Hazardous Material
  • Construction Material (i.e. sinks, vanities, tubs, toilets, etc.)
  • Fireworks, firearms and explosives of any kind
  • Mattresses/Box Springs
  • Automobile Tires and Batteries
  • Items that are Broken or in Need of Major Repair
  • Any items known to be on a recall list
  • Console CRT Televisions
Can I claim an IRS deduction for items I’ve donated?

Yes, Goodwill of Chattanooga is a 501 (3) (c) nonprofit organization.  According to the IRS, donated goods (in good, used condition or better) made to us are tax-deductible.  We will provide you with a receipt once you’ve made a donation to keep for your tax records.  

I dropped off items at a donation center. Can you tell me how much I can claim for an IRS deduction?

According to IRS regulations, a non-profit organization cannot provide a donor with the dollar value of an in-kind gift.  However, there are resources available to locate reasonable values for your donations.  Please click here for Donation Valuation Guide

I really believe in the Goodwill mission. Can I donate money?

Absolutely.  You can make monetary donations directly from our website here, donate at the register of any of our stores, or contact us at 423-629-2501 ext 2550

Does Goodwill repair items?

We are not equipped to repair items, and do not sell items that are broken, torn or soiled.

What happens to the donated items you can’t sell?

Our goal is to be good stewards of your generosity.  We have recycling programs that allow us to minimize our environmental footprint.

Why won’t you take all the stuff I want to donate?

There are some items that are impractical or illegal for us to accept.   Please click here for a list of those items. 

What happens to donated medical equipment?

We now partner with Friends of Disabled Adults & Children (FODAC), another nonprofit whose mission is to provide durable medical equipment such as wheelchairs and hospital beds at little or no cost to individuals with disabilities.  Many smaller medical items that are donated are sold in our stores or recycled.

Can I donate a car?

Yes, if you have a used car, truck, boat, RV or other vehicle you can donate it to Goodwill.  To donate your vehicle or for more information, call Goodwill at 202-899-5433 or click here to find more information. 

Who does Goodwill help?

Everyone.  Goodwill helps people who face various barriers to employment like lack of work history; physical, mental and emotional disabilities; limited education; language barriers; criminal background and other challenges that stand in the way to employment.

How can I find more information about Goodwill?

Visit About Us for more information about our organization or call 423-629-2501.  To stay up-to-date follow us on social media and subscribe to our newsletter.

Is there a limit for what I can donate to Goodwill?

There is no limit to what you can donate; however, please keep in mind that IRS Form 8283 is required when an in-kind donation exceeds $500 fair market value.  Should the fair market value of a single item, or group of similar items, exceed $5,000, you must provide a certified appraised value of the item and Goodwill will complete Part IV of Section B of IRS Form 8283.

Does Goodwill donate to charity?

Goodwill of Chattanooga is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit.  Revenue generated in our stores supports our mission to change lives through the power of work.  In addition, we also partner with other agencies to be a resource for those who are homeless and need clothing assistance.