Women who find themselves in shelters that catered to battered women usually are in the midst of a very serious, life-altering personal crisis. Not only are they victims of domestic abuse, but they have been forced to flee their home, sometimes with their children in tow. The women may have very few, if any, possessions and often are in need of basic items, including clothing. Women in shelters for the battered come in all shapes and sizes, and shelters normally will gratefully accept any clothing donation, provided it is in good shape and wearable.
Look in your local phone book's business listings under family services to find shelter listings. Call the shelters and ask if you can donate your clothing to them. Ask about the procedures, i.e. should the clothes be separated by size or type of item.
Use a shelter search feature maintained by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Visit HUD's "Shelters and Emergency Housing: New Jersey" page and select a county. Look for listings with "05" under the contact information, which signals the shelter is for domestic violence victims. Contact the shelter to ask about clothing donations and procedures.
Visit the New Jersey page on Women's Shelters, a nationwide directory of shelters for women. Click on the city closest to you, or the one where you'd like to donate. Select a shelter and click on "View Details" to learn if the shelter is one you'd like to donate to -- not all are specifically for battered women, but many are. Contact your selected shelter for more information on donating.
Launder the clothing donations before you drop them off or have them picked up. Fold the items neatly so they don't wrinkle. Write the size on the inside of the item if the tags have been removed. Stack the clothing into plastic bags, separating them by item type if that is the shelter's preference.
Items you will need
- Phone book
- Ask before donating items such as bras, as some shelters only accept new items.
- Donate only new, not used, underwear.
- Some shelters will not allow you to drop off the items, as they want to maintain confidentiality about the location of the shelter to protect the women.
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