REAL AUSTRALIA

Voice of Real Australia: 'COVID clear-out' still inundating op shops with donations

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Several Op Shops have had to temporarily stop accepting donations in recent months, as they've been overwhelmed with goods.

Several Op Shops have had to temporarily stop accepting donations in recent months, as they've been overwhelmed with goods.

It's not the worst problem in the world - we're all just a bit too generous. But it does create the perfect opportunity for some low-cost shopping.

I'm talking about the way op shops have been inundated with donations in recent months.

It's something about the way we've all been spending that bit more time at home, doing that long-awaited house sort-out.

Lockdowns are the new Marie Kondo.

But while the initial "COVID clean-out" happened about 10 months ago, it seems people are still clearing out their closets.

In Dubbo, in central west NSW, the Daily Liberal told its subscribers that post-Christmas period has resulted in a recent spike of donations, although the flow is slowing down again as school has returned.

Dubbo Anglican Church minister Brett Watterson said they had to temporarily stop accepting donations because their storerooms were overflowing.

"All the increase in donations is basically because of COVID; everyone was at home for a long time and cleaned out their houses for stuff they don't need anymore but we still get some stuff that we have to get rid of," he said.

Australian Red Cross Dubbo store manager Julie Warren (left) and volunteer Ros Gable. With stores inundated with goods, it's a good time to go shopping to help clear the backlog. Photo: TOM BARBER

Australian Red Cross Dubbo store manager Julie Warren (left) and volunteer Ros Gable. With stores inundated with goods, it's a good time to go shopping to help clear the backlog. Photo: TOM BARBER

It was a similar scenario in Tamworth, in northern NSW. But the Northern Daily Leader told its subscribers the bump came before Christmas. It meant some charity shops to put padlocks on their donation bins just to give the volunteer teams time to sort through them.

St John's Op Shop volunteer Carol Brice said it was the busiest it had ever been in the 15 or so years she had been involved.

"It has been hectic," she said.

But Op Shop coordinators are issuing reminders that they cannot just be the dumping ground for all unwanted goods.

"Our rule of thumb when sorting your pre-loved goods is, if you'd give it to a friend, then we'd love the donation," Australian Red Cross head of retail Richard Wood said.

In the meantime, this sounds like the perfect time to go op-shopping and discover a few treasures and bargains.

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This story 'COVID clear-out' still inundating op shops with donations first appeared on Daily Liberal.