I got a flyer in the mail recently announcing the launch of re-fashion NYC, a new partnership between the City of New York and Housing Works, a well-known NYC non-profit organization that helps the homeless and people living with and affected by HIV/AIDS. Whoever thought of this program deserves a lot of credit. It’s a very smart idea. Since NYC residents throw away approximately 200,000 tons of clothing, linens, shoes, and accessories each year, the idea is to make it as simple as possible for residents to donate those items rather than tossing them. re-fashioNYC will invites apartment buildings of 10 units or more to sign up for a large (6″ tall) bin where tenants can make their donations. The bins will be emptied regularly and tax receipts will be given to donors. The clothing, accessories and linens that are donated will be brought to Housing Works’ warehouse in Queens for sorting and distribution to its own thrift shops throughout NYC, its “all you can stuff” warehouse sales, and also to other thrift shops in the NYC and abroad (some will be sent to Haiti). All profits from the thrift store sales of these items will be given directly to benefit low-income and homeless New Yorkers living with an affected by HIV/AIDs. For more information, or to find out how your building can start participating, visit the re-fashion NYC page at

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