The Ripple Effect of Cleaning Out Your Closet {And the Nampa DI Grand Opening Event #DIFINDS}

The Ripple Effect

We’ve all heard this term…  one small action effects not just one other, but several others as well.

Why something I learned changed my attitude about what stays in my closet and how my small action can truly change lives

Today I’m sharing something that I’ve learned about recently that really just gave me warm fuzzies.  It was powerful enough to cause me to clean out my closet… I mean REALLY clean out my closet.  And bless the lives of others.  I’ve had a few misconceptions over the years… and I’ve been set straight and want to help set you straight too!

Exactly what is it that I’m talking about?

Deseret Industries.  Also known as DI.  Ever since I can remember, I’ve been taught to donate my unwanted and unneeded things to DI.  It’s just what we’ve done.  Although, most often times, the unwanted and unneeded things that we’ve donated, in my eyes, seemed like junk!  So I never thought that I’d FIND anything more than “junk” at DI.

Last week Monica, Becky, Hannah, and I (along with many other bloggers in our city) had the opportunity to visit the new Nampa Deseret Industries and get a sneak peek!

Bloggers at Nampa DI

We also received some education about the PURPOSE of DI, and exactly how it works!  Not only am I dying to attend the Grand Opening (more on why later), but I felt compelled to DONATE.  As many of you have known, over the last 12 months I’ve lost 55 pounds.  Like I’ve gone from size 12 to size 3.  Large to Small.  Which means 75% of my closet no longer fits me.  I had a LOT of clothes that were very new (I have a shopping addiction to Jane.com).  And it’s gotten a little expensive buying a whole new wardrobe.  SO I’ve been hanging on to all my size M and L clothes to sell them either online, on facebook, or at a consignment shop.  But it’s been at the bottom of my list because I’ve been too busy to do anything about it.

After learning about the purpose and mission of DI last week, instead of hanging on to all these clothes, I donated them this past weekend.  It was hard in some ways… some of the pieces were sentimental (the sweater I wore on the Today Show, the jacket I wore for the New York Times Magazine photoshoot, the shirt I wore when we did filming for the Today Show segment…).  BUT at the same time, I had the opportunity to think about all that we’ve accomplished in the last 7 years of blogging, AND I could also take a moment and realize that “MY LOSS is someone elses GAIN!”.  PLUS, my closet now has a TON of room.  And I’ve got warm fuzzies because I know that my donation will have a ripple affect.

SO – let me share with you what I learned (and let you know about the Nampa DI Grand Opening and some of the #DIFINDS that I came across at this location!)…  and my hope is to compel you to not only donate to a Deseret Industries in your area, but to compel you to go shop at one!

Some of the goodies I spotted at the Nampa DI... the Grand Opening is October 15th at 10am!

Some of the goodies I spotted at the Nampa DI… the Grand Opening is October 15th at 10am!

Misconception #1 – DI Sells Junk

Just because what I’ve donated seemed like junk to me, doesn’t mean that it wasn’t something that someone else could REALLY use!  When we toured the new Nampa DI, I was crazy impressed with the awesome items they had to offer!  Some of my favorites?  LA Idol Jeans, Underarmor Sweatshirts, activewear, CUTE handbags, shoes in every color, board games, books, bike helmets, canning jars, camping stuff, beautiful furniture, and more!

Misconception #2 – DI Won’t Take Your “Junk”

When we asked a regional manager about donating “anything”, he said that YES, they wanted us to donate ANYTHING!  Let THEM determine if it’s junk or not.  They will even take SINGLE SHOES!  Donated items could end up being sent to 3rd world countries!  There are people with only one foot that can use one shoe!  So if you have a single shoe floating around the house, DONATE it rather than throw it away!  Of course, if the clothing that you want to donate needs to be washed, then wash it first.  But things don’t need to be in immaculate condition in order for it to be donated.  Let the workers determine whether or not it is trash.  Does this make sense? SEND IT to DI!

random items at DI

Misconception #3 – DI Only Sells Second Hand Stuff

Wrong!  DI actually has a manufacturing plant that builds many wood products (think: bunk beds), they manufacture brand new mattresses (they are nice!), and you can even get brand new underwear, socks, towels, blankets, sheets, white church shirts for your boys (I think they were $7?), brand new high quality men’s wool suits for $79, and even brand new coats!  You looking for a deal? THIS is where you’ll find it!  SHOP at DI!

Misconception #4 – DI Only Helps Disabled People

Don’t get me wrong… there is nothing wrong with this, in fact I love that DI provides employment for those with disabilities!  But what I did learn is that there is so much more to this!  They also give jobs to people who are out of work, who would benefit from further training, education, and skills.  AND you don’t have to be LDS to receive this benefit either.  You only need a referral from an LDS Bishop.  Working for DI is not the end point.  It’s a transition. Each employee has a “job coach” that meets with them one on one and helps them develop a plan, set goals, and this coach is their accountability partner as well.  The goal for a DI employee is to help them learn a skill and become educated so they can find a CAREER doing something they enjoy.  Read on about how DI is set up to train people to CHANGE LIVES!

More Than a Thrift Store

A Means to an End:  Since 1938, Deseret Industries has been blessing the lives of others.  Not only do they provide great deals for those that shop there, ALL profits fund the programs that TRAIN the employees to be successful!  DI wants to help people to find a better job… and not just a job… a career that they’ll enjoy!  Individuals that are blessed are those who have a lack of work history, multi-generational poverty, disabilities, or limited education and English language skills.

Local Community Outreach:  DI partners with local agencies to assist those whom they serve and provide goods at no cost to them.

Business Partners:  DI works with other businesses in the community… they will match these businesses with individuals desiring on-the-job training in their chosen field.  DI will actually pay for the individual to receive the training!  How awesome is that!  That money comes from proceeds from the store… from YOU the shopper!

How You Can Help

Shop:  You can feel good about the money you spend at DI.  Not only are you getting a lot for a little, feel good by knowing that this money goes to help so many other people!  A few tips about shopping at DI… you’ll find that everything in each department is segmented by color, and in some cases, it is cascaded by sizes (smaller to larger… by color).  See this rack in the picture below?  All the blue PJ’s are by each other, then the green, then the gray… and so on.  Check out this rack of shoes too!

DI Color Coding

#DI Finds... check out the rack of shoes at DI!

Donate:  Like I said above, donate!  You’re blessing so many lives when you do this!  From the person that really needs this item, to those that receive on the job training, coaching, and more… because of the money earned from your donation!  And remember, “one persons trash is another mans treasure!”.  If you haven’t worn it in the last year, it’s time to say goodbye to it!  Don’t wait for “someday”… let someone else benefit from that item that is collecting dust in your home!  I promise, once it is out of your home and you’ve let go of it, you will be blessed!

Nampa DI Grand Opening October 15-17

DI FINDS AT THE NAMPA DI

Now for my local friends…. this is where you need to be Thursday morning at 10am!  I hear the grand openings of DI’s are similar to Black Friday.  I’m talking a line out front of the store waiting for it to open.  I got to walk around the store for over an hour last week.  I wasn’t able to purchase anything, but I sure do have a list of items that I’d love to get my hands on!  Shoes, furniture, games, canning items, camping items, and some super cute jeans!!

Join the Nampa DI Grand Opening Facebook Event HERE

you’ll see several other pictures from other local bloggers as well (your own virtual sneak peek!).

Why something I learned changed my attitude about what stays in my closet and how my small action can truly change lives

Will you be going to the Grand Opening Event?
Do you ever donate to DI?
Do you have a problem “letting go”?

 

Comments

  • I love this post Cathy! Thanks so much for sharing it. I agree, what DI does for the welfare of so many makes me feel so good about all and anything I can give. The #difinds at the Nampa DI were absolutely amazing, so it’s a win-win for all who donate, shop, and are mentored and educated through this valuable program…so much more than a thrift shop.

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