(BPT) - Moving from one home, one city and even one state to another is a great opportunity to clean house and start fresh. Instead of packing all belongings – even those that haven’t been used in years – moving gives families a chance to reduce their material goods so that what ends up being unpacked in the new house is immediately used.
While purging their belongings, families should consider giving back to their community, both as a nice way to say goodbye and to make the move much easier. Some ways to give back while moving include:
* Donate unneeded belongings to organizations that can put them to good use. If you have gently used furniture, clothing, children’s toys, books or even kitchen utensils that you won’t need in your new home, many organizations will take these items to help victims of natural disasters, or to sell to help financially support other needs of the organization. If you aren’t able to find an organization that will accept donated items, consider holding a yard sale and donating the cash to a local charity. When advertising the garage sale, be sure to advertise the charity you’re supporting, and ask shoppers if they’d like to also contribute to the charity.
* Make your donations go further. When donating to an organization, businesses will often match a donation. To help you in giving back during your move, Penske Truck Rental is raising funds to help the Paralyzed Veterans of America and its Mission: ABLE campaign. This campaign ensures veterans with disabilities get the care, benefits and job opportunities they’ve earned and deserve, says U.S. Army veteran Bill Lawson, national president of the organization. Penske Truck Rental customers renting a truck can donate $1 to support Mission: ABLE. Penske will match each donation made by Memorial Day, 2014.
* Use recyclable containers for packing. Contact your local grocery store or restaurant and ask if you can help them recycle their boxes by using them for packing. This gives these boxes one additional use prior to disposal, helping out your community and the environment.
* Hire your packing help from a local youth group or non-profit organization. Call up local youth organizations and offer to pay a salary for young workers to help you load the moving truck with your packed belongings. Be sure to mark boxes carefully if they are heavy or contain fragile items, and also have a family member in charge of directing how boxes and furniture will be loaded into the truck. This is a great way to help support a local organization while also helping you to move.
As you plan your move, consider these ways you can give back, both in your current community and the new community. It will help make the transition smoother and help you to embrace and learn more about the new community.