Three Easy Ways to Donate Your Garage Sale Leftovers to Goodwill

Three Easy Ways to Donate Your Garage Sale Leftovers to Goodwill

By Alana Sesow

Garage sale season is here, which means it’s time to declutter your home and part ways with the things you no longer need. From the cleaning process to the final bargain, hosting a garage sale is hard work. So, when the sale ends, the last thing you want to do is haul the unsold items back inside.

Don’t let your leftover items sit around for another year; donate to Goodwill instead! Goodwill offers several free, convenient donation options for garage sale vendors. Here are three:

1. Donate to Goodwill’s Neighborhood Challenge

If you’re participating in a neighborhood-wide garage sale, ask your association about Goodwill’s Neighborhood Challenge!

The Neighborhood Challenge is an annual event that encourages associations to donate their gently used items to Goodwill after garage sales or cleanup events. Participating associations receive a free donation pickup at a centralized neighborhood location. After the pickup is over, Goodwill weighs the donations. At the end of the summer, the top three associations that collect over 2,000 pounds of donations will receive a cash prize to help fund a community improvement project of their choosing.

To find out if your neighborhood is participating, call 402-742-8456 or email

2. Schedule a Free Home Pickup

If you’re planning your sale individually or if your neighborhood is not participating in the Challenge, schedule a free home pickup for your Goodwill donations. Goodwill picks up large donations Monday-Friday within the Lincoln and Waverly city limits. This option is perfect for vendors whose items cannot fit in a regular passenger vehicle.

To schedule now, fill out our online form or call 402-438-2022.

3. Bring Donations to a Thrift Location

Goodwill makes donation drop off easy with five Southeast Nebraska locations: four in Lincoln and one in York. All five locations accept gently used clothing, electronics, home goods and furniture seven days a week during store hours. Visit the Find a Location page for specific hours and addresses.

No matter which donation method you choose, you’ll support Goodwill’s mission of changing lives through the power of work. The revenue from our thrift stores helps fund local programs that assist job seekers as they overcome traditional barriers to employment. We also recycle many of the items we cannot sell. In 2021 alone, Goodwill helped over 3,500 Southeast Nebraskans with employment-related services and diverted over 2.3 million pounds of materials from the landfill.

For more information about Goodwill’s donation services, email or call 402-742-8456.

Goodwill Introduces New Partners to Rising Together™ this Week

Goodwill Introduces New Partners to Rising Together™ this Week

In the last two years, there has been a nationwide increase in labor shortages across a variety of industries. The preexisting skills gap, exacerbated by the pandemic, contributed to these labor shortages, and marginalized communities have experienced the most job insecurity and economic uncertainty. That’s why Goodwill® launched Rising Together™ last year with the goal of connecting more than one million people with sustainable careers by 2025.

Through this initiative, Goodwill partnered with the Anthem Foundation, Coursera, Indeed, Google and Lyft to provide workforce development programs across the nation in skilled trades, healthcare and technology/digital sectors. Job seekers — many of whom come from low-income backgrounds and don’t have access to supports such as skills building, child care, transportation or housing in some cases — have gained employment in new fields, experienced wage increases and enjoyed an overall improvement in the quality of their lives.

Trayvon Lowry is just one example of a multitude of individuals whose lives have improved following completion of Goodwill’s workforce development programs. Trayvon entered Goodwill of North Georgia’s program with a criminal background and graduated earlier this year with a forklift certification, a wage of $20/hour, and a pathway to move out of transitional housing and into his own apartment. He attributes his success to the support he received and the skills he gained at Goodwill.

Still, the economic recovery has not been equitable. More than 1.1 million fewer women are in the labor force than in February 2020, and the unemployment rate for Black women sits above the national average at 5.5 percent as of March 2022. To address the continued need to support individuals such as Trayvon in our communities, Goodwill is expanding the work of Rising Together™.

This week, Goodwill Industries Serving Southeast Nebraska, Inc. is announcing the addition of new partners to Rising Together™, including Accenture, Bank of America, Comcast Internet Essentials, Lowe’s and USAA. With these new partners, Goodwill and the Rising Together™ coalition will continue to drive an equitable economic recovery — beginning with providing every job seeker with the support they need to access good jobs, including skills training, transportation and internet access. To view Goodwill and its partners’ commitments to an equitable recovery and to hear from the coalition’s executives, visit