A used clothing collection company, originated in Western NY State, based locally in Portland, OR, is offering non-profit groups a way to raise funds while helping not only the communities they serve, but people all over the world.
St. Pauly Textile Inc. was founded by friends Paul Callarame and Joe DeGeorge about 18 years ago. The company started by helping its local schools, churches and other organizations hold clothing drives and has expanded across the Northeast and now the Northwest, by providing non-profits with used clothing drop-off sheds, where the clothing is dropped off, picked up by a St. Pauly representative, and then distributed to places of need in the U.S. and worldwide.
Accepted items include clothing, shoes, sneakers, belts, purses, blankets, sheets, drapes, pillowcases and stuffed animals. Donors are asked to donate items in a plastic bag to protect against dirt and the elements. For those people who want to make a tax-deductible donation a small box on the shed holds clothing drop-off receipts.
Not only does the program cost the church nothing, the church also is paid 4 cents per pound of clothing collected by St. Pauly, helping raise funds for that local group.
According to the company’s website, www.stpaulytextile.com, funding for the operation comes from the relief organizations, foreign governments, United Nations, private companies and the U.S. government that contract with St. Pauly to collect clothing when they need it, as opposed to purchasing new clothing. The church also can choose to keep any of the donations for the local community at no cost.
In 2013 St. Pauly was able to help keep over 60 million garments out of landfills and helped clothe an estimated 7.5 million people worldwide. They were also able to send back over $850,000 to the more than 800 non-profit community groups they work with.