Every day, damaged and worn-out clothes, shoes and linens are thrown into the trash because some people think these items can’t be reused or recycled. That is why The Big Blue Truck™ has partnered with King County and Seattle Public Utilities to let the public know that these items can be donated through a program called Threadcycle. We’re asking everyone to give all their clothes, shoes and linens (as long as they are not wet, mildewed or soiled with hazardous materials) to Northwest Center instead of tossing them away.
Textiles in the garbage
Seattle and King County residents and businesses throw away nearly 40,000 TONS of clothes, shoes, linens and other textiles each year. The EPA estimates that the average person throws away 70 pounds of clothing annually. That adds up to nearly 2 million tons of unnecessary waste added to our landfills. According to the association of Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles, up to 95 percent of clothes, shoes and linens that are thrown in the garbage could have been reused or recycled.
We take everything, not just “gently used”
The Big Blue Truck wants our donors to know we take damaged clothes and linens—not just ones that are “gently used.” Even single shoes, socks and gloves that are missing their buddies can be donated. Why? Because those items can still be used in industrial setting as wiping cloths and or converted back into fiber for new products like insulation for homes and soundproofing products for cars. Single items like shoes and socks can be matched with other “singles,” sold to export markets, and worn by people who otherwise would not have those items.
We’ll take it!
So along with reusable clothes, gather up your mismatched socks, ripped t-shirts and faded, old sheets. You can place all your items for reuse or recycling into one bag or box. We make it easy for you to give. Just give us a call at (800) 992-2060 or visit BigBlueTruck.org to find the Attended Donation Station or bin closest to you or to schedule a front-door pickup.
Want to learn a bit more about Threadcycle? Visit kingcounty.gov/threadcycle.
Northwest Center is passionate about equal rights, anti-ableism, and full inclusion for people with disabilities. Thank you for reading.