Header image courtesy of Dan Gold (via Unsplash)
It’s no secret that our tiny Hong Kong apartments can accumulate a lot of clutter, and before we know it, we’re battling with bowing wardrobe rails, overflowing draws, and who knows what’s lurking underneath our bed? So, to help you out, we’ve done our homework to find you the best ways to donate your unwanted items, give them a second life, all while contributing towards a worthy cause. Get ready to lighten the load and help those in need!
If you’re looking to lighten your bookshelf and give your favourite reads a new home, then second-hand bookstore BooksMart is always on the lookout for donations. Located in Sai Ying Pun, the store sells new and used English books at very reasonable prices. However, be sure to email them a list of your books first so they can tell you which ones they can accept.
What you can donate: Books
BooksMart, Flat 212, 11/F, Glorious Commercial Building, 210–212 Des Voeux Road West, Sai Ying Pun | (+852) 2620 5035
Located within the St. John’s Cathedral, Castaways Charity Shop is a donation-based charity shop staffed by wonderful volunteers from Clare’s Women’s Network. They accept clothing, including shoes and handbags, books, as well as household linens, providing they are all in good, clean, and saleable conditions. All profits made go to small local charities in Hong Kong.
What you can donate: All wearable clothing, shoes, handbags, books, beddings
Castaways Charity Shop, St John’s Cathedral, 4–8 Garden Road, Central | (+852) 2523 4157
The official social service agency of the Catholic Church in Hong Kong, Caritas aims to address some of the social hardships and inequalities of people in Hong Kong, providing social work, education, medical care, community development, and hospitality services. They accept all wearable clothing, as well as used toys and books, but they do ask that donated toys are cleaned first. You can help support their program and drop off your items at their community centre in Mid-Levels.
What you can donate: All wearable clothing
Caritas Community Centre, 2/F, Caritas House, 2–8 Caine Road, Mid-Levels | (+852) 2843 4652
Established in 1985 as a registered charitable organisation in Hong Kong, Christian Action is the only comprehensive provider of services to ethnic minorities, refugees, asylum seekers, and foreign domestic helpers. As part of their Green Collection Charity Drive, they accept any item of clothing that can be worn again, as well as baby items, books, and toys. You can give them a call to arrange a pick up from your home.
What you can donate: All wearable clothing, books, baby items, and toys
If you have larger items that you’re looking to shift, such as furniture and electrical home appliances, then give Crossroads a call. The long-standing NGO takes high-quality, unwanted goods from Hong Kong and redistributes them to people in need around the world. They accept all sorts of items, from clothing, books, and bedding, to small and large cooking equipment, electrical appliances, and furniture.
All re-wearable goods go into their Global Distribution Program, half of which are distributed to local cases sponsored by the Social Welfare Department, while the other half are designated to foreign countries such as India, Cameroon, and Fiji. Fill out the online form to describe what you would like to donate, and give them a call to arrange a pick-up, mail-in or drop off at their door. Just be aware that it can take a few weeks to arrange their pickup service, so you might want to hire a man with a van instead.
What you can donate: All wearable clothing, electrical appliances, household goods, furniture, baby items, and toys
Crossroads Foundation, Crossroads Village, 2 Castle Peak Road, Tuen Mun | (+852) 2984 9309
As its name suggests, Flowbooks is literally overflowing with books. Not only can book lovers browse through stacks of pre-loved books at the shop, but they can also bring their collection of unwanted books from home into the store and donate them to charities or individuals in need. This is a great way to de-clutter your home, help reduce waste, and do good in the community!
What you can donate: Books
Flowbooks, 1/F, Kai Fung Mansion, 189–205 Queen’s Road Central, Sheung Wan | (+852) 9278 5664
Reusing and recycling is the name of the game for environmental charity Friends of the Earth. They launched the Used Clothes Recycling Programme in 2001, and accept items such as clothes, shoes, and handbags at the many collection points dotted around the city. Re-wearables are sent to neighbouring countries while worn out pieces are turned into wipers for industrial use. The profits made from the programme are spent to support the FoE(HK) community education works. Since 2001, they have collected more than 4,000 tonnes of used clothes. Add your bundle to the mix and find your nearest collection point.
What you can donate: All wearable clothing, shoes, bedding, handbags
Established in 1970, this government registered organisation helps people with disabilities in Hong Kong. The Federation accepts donations of second-hand clothing and books which prove to be very helpful to the young people they support. If you live on Kowloon side, this is a great donation option as you can drop off your items at their address in Wong Tai Sin.
What you can donate: All wearable clothing and books
Hong Kong Federation of Handicapped Youth, G/F, 16–21 Wan Kei House, Wang Tau Hom Estate, Wong Tai Sin | (+852) 2388 5111
The Hong Kong Salvation Army Recycling Programme welcomes both organisation and personal donations such as clothing, books, toys, and home electrical appliances. You can drop your donations off at any of the seventeen Family Stores in Hong Kong where they are sold to raise money to support a variety of the charity’s community programmes. Some of the donated goods will directly help people in need, such as street sleepers, ex-prisoners, the home-alone elderly, and CSSA recipients. For donations of a large quantity, such as five large bags of clothing, or heavy items such as TV sets, washing machines, refrigerators, and large musical instruments, contact the recycling hotline to arrange a pick-up service one to two weeks in advance.
What you can donate: All wearable clothing and electrical appliances
Mother’s Choice is a local charity serving many children without families and pregnant teenagers in Hong Kong. They provide high-quality services for children, youth, and families, and are often looking for baby items such as diapers, wipes, bottles, and other specific needs. You can check their website to see what they need most at this time and fill out the online form with photos of the items you would like to donate. They will contact you within two to three business days to arrange for drop off at one of their locations in Mid-Levels or Kwun Tong.
What you can donate: Baby diapers, wipes, bottles, teats, and other specific needs. Click here to see their current needs
Long-time DB resident and mother Nikki Boot collects donation pieces across Hong Kong and redistributes them to people in need, hoping that our unwanted items can assist the less fortunate. Since 2013, she has collected from over thousands of homes and recycled resources to over hundreds of low-income homes in Hong Kong. On Wednesdays and Saturdays, she also organises Charity Collection Days to provide work opportunities to underprivileged Hongkongers as a way to help them earn more cash flow for their families.
Regular pick-up and delivery services are available from Monday to Saturday; all you have to do is join the DB Mothers & Friends Facebook group, send Nikki a private message with pictures of your donation items, collection address, and contact number. She will then reach out to arrange a suitable collection time. Collection fees apply and vary according to the size of the collection items to help Nikki and her team operate their services with a truck, movers, tolls, and parking fees.
What you can donate: Furniture, electronic appliances, household items, toys, clothes, and books
Formally established as the Society for the Protection of Women and Children in 1880, Po Leung Kuk Orphanage currently runs over 260 units throughout Hong Kong providing welfare, educational, recreational, and cultural services to the community. They accept a wide variety of donations to meet the basic needs of their recipients and these can be dropped off at their Wan Chai location.
What you can donate: All wearable clothing, electrical appliances, computers, stationery, toys, baby items, household accessories, and cookware
Po Leung Kuk Orphanage, 66 Leighton Road, Wan Chai | (+852) 2277 8888
Enterprising Grade 9 student Bailey Cherry wanted to find an easy, sustainable, and modern way to pass on her beloved titles to book lovers around town, so she created her own! reBooked is an online platform that focuses on pre-used English children’s books, study guides for students, and young adult books for 14 years and younger. You can arrange for pick-up services for your volumes via their online form, and the reBooked team will sort through and add all suitable titles to their online store. Best of all, if you’re looking to add a little something back to your collection, you receive credit for one free book for every 10 books you donate!
What you can donate: Children’s books
A Christian charity dedicated to helping drug addicts, the homeless, and other people in need, Remar Hong Kong is able to accept larger electrical appliances and furniture donations which are stored in its large warehouse. You can call or email them to arrange a pick-up, but be aware that there are charges for their assistance and travel.
What you can donate: Large electrical appliances and furniture
Remar Hong Kong, 1/F, 19 Shui Tau Tsuen, Yuen Long | (+852) 3193 4919
Tucked away on Stone Nullah Lane, St James’ Settlement runs a number of charity projects, including daycare and a food bank for the elderly. You can drop off canned or dry food with an expiry date more than eight weeks away, as well as any wearable clothing and small electrical appliances which are then sold to raise funds to support the charity’s projects.
What you can donate: All wearable clothing, small electrical appliances, and canned or dry food items
St James’ Settlement, 85 Stone Nullah Lane, Wan Chai | (+852) 2574 5201
For convenience, you can head to any H&M, Zara, or Uniqlo to donate your items. H&M even offers a 10 percent discount for every bag that you donate (each person can donate up to two bags per day). Apart from high street stores, you can also make donations to other alternatives such as Retykle, where you can drop off clothes that your little ones have outgrown and turn them into cash or store credit. Social enterprises like Redress and Green Ladies also accept donations of clothes and accessories.